At the trade deadline two weeks ago, the St. Louis Blues acquired Jakub Vrana from the Detroit Red Wings in exchange for a seventh-round pick in the 2025 NHL Draft and forward Dylan McLaughlin. The Red Wings agreed to retain 50% of Vrana’s contract, which runs through 2023-24 with a $5.25 million salary cap hit.
Ever since he started playing as a member of the Blues, Vrana has collected four goals in five games. Daily Face-Off has put him in the list of trade deadline acquisitions thriving with their new teams, along with Jakob Chychrun, Jonathan Quick, Rasmus Sandin and Anthony Beauvillier.
“Vrana was a low-risk, high-reward pickup for the Blues. His off-ice issues and damaged relationship with Detroit allowed the Blues to snag him for a low-end prospect and a 2025 seventh-round pick. In five games with the Blues, Vrana already is up to four goals, building upon a run that saw him record eight points in his last six AHL games with Grand Rapids. The Blues are in retooling mode now after the trades of Vladimir Tarasenko, Ryan O’Reilly and Ivan Barbashev, but Vrana’s recent play has been a huge boost for the Blues.”
That’s the thing: what happened to damage his relationship with the Red Wings - so much - that GM Steve Yzerman simply gave him up to the Blues?
We get that his time in Detroit was marked by absences. In 2021, he was late for training camp and left after 10 minutes on the ice because of a nagging shoulder injury. He had to undergo surgery and didn’t play until March 1.
As for 2022-23, he entered the players assistance program Oct. 15, and was reinstated Dec. 16. He had played just two games before his departure, scoring once, and took part in three games after returning, collecting one goal in five games.
Yzerman kept his comments about the trade very limited, which still has fans wondering what is the real reason behind Vrana’s move.
“I don’t think I can really go into details on a lot of the things that have gone on,” Yzerman said.
It’ll be interesting to know if we find out more about it once the Blues face the Red Wings on Tuesday in St. Louis and then again on Thursday, this time in Detroit.
Let’s see if more will be said about this controversial trade that’s still got fans wondering about the truth!