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Blues finalize key transaction amid Vladimir Tarasenko trade rumors

Blues, Vladimir Tarasenko

Man, it’s a hot one. The St. Louis Blues have accomplished one of their remaining key goals in the offseason, as they inked forward Robert Thomas to a new, two-year deal that comes with an average annual value of $2.8 million, according to a report by The Athletic. Of course, the Blues are still not completely past the drama involving Vladimir Tarasenko, but retaining Thomas secures them some measure of depth at the center position.

The Blues and Thomas smoothened out the transaction just days before the St. Louis’ training camp begins. Moreover, signing Thomas meant that St. Louis has maxed out its cap space. Their projected cap hit for the 2021-22 NHL season is at $82.76 million, per CapFriendly.

Apart from Thomas, St. Louis’ center group also has Ryan O’Reilly, Brayden Schenn, Oskar Sundqvist, Ivan Barbashev, and Tyler Bozak.

Thomas was selected 20th overall by St. Louis in the 2017 NHL Entry Draft, but only made his debut in the league in the 2018-19 season, the same campaign where the Blues won the Stanley Cup.

In three seasons so far in his pro career, Thomas has collected 22 goals and 65 assists. He’s been a nice source of points and a positive asset on the ice for the Blues when he’s healthy, as he’s registered a PDO of at least 100 in each of the last three years.