Where Will TJ Brodie Land This Offseason?
TJ Brodie becomes an unrestricted free agent October 9. The question is, where will he land in this shortened offseason?
The defender, who has spent his entire 9 year NHL career with the Calgary Flames, will be one of the most sought after players when free agency opens.
So where will the offensive, and swift skating defenceman land?
Brodie and his wife were born and raised in Ontario, with Brodie calling his hometown Dresden.
That, combined with the fact they’ve tried to trade for him on at least one occasion, and are in desperate need of an upgrade on the blueline, and the Toronto Maple Leafs look like a fit.
The Calgary Flames blueliner however, is known for being quiet, and media shy, a combination that doesn’t meld well with the magnified, pressure cooker, fish bowl, critique filled Maple Leafs. Couple that with the fact the Leafs will be looking for a few bargains to help control their cap, and Brodie, who earned $4.65 million this year, and will likely garner a raise, may not be their guy.
How about the other close to home option, the Detroit Red Wings?
On a team that will have an abundance of cap space, and definitely needs defensive help, that could be another close to home option for Brodie. This one would depend on where in the rebuild Steve Yzerman feels he is, and how important winning is to Brodie.
Staying in Canada, every team in the West could use defensive upgrades.
Brodie would look good on a burgeoning Vancouver Canucks team moving the puck up to the likes of Elias Pettersson and Bo Horvat. The Canucks are definitely moving into a winning window, a fact that they proved this post season.
If he’s interested in staying in Alberta, the Edmonton Oilers have always searched for ways to patch their blueline, and who wouldn’t want to have the easy points coming in from simply getting the puck out of your zone and into the hands of McDavid and Draisaitl.
The Winnipeg Jets are also in need of defenders.
Another option, if Brodie chooses to move East, would be the Florida Panthers, who have kicked the tires on defensive upgrades, and could be a good fit stylistically for Brodie, and for his out of the spotlight lifestyle.
Last but not least, the Calgary Flames are unlikely to part with Brodie without having a conversation with their longtime blueliner. Familiarity, and the fact Brodie played top pair minutes on many occasions this season, show that staying put may be the option that wins out.
Where will he go? Although money talks, we expect this small town boy to choose as much for personal fit, and lifestyle as for dollar signs.