ST. LOUIS – St. Louis Blues President John Davidson announced today the team has acquired the rights to center Keith Tkachuk from the Atlanta Thrashers along with a conditional 4th round draft choice in 2008 (which could become a 3rd round choice in 2009) in exchange for a conditional 1st round draft choice in 2008 (previously acquired from Atlanta on Feb. 25, 2007).
“We have acquired the rights to Keith Tkachuk which gives us exclusive negotiating rights with him and his family prior to becoming an unrestricted free agent on July 1,” said Davidson. “Keith has played a major part for the Blues organization over the past seven seasons and played some of his finest hockey under Head Coach Andy Murray.”
The Blues traded Tkachuk to Atlanta in exchange for a first round draft choice in 2007, a third round draft choice in 2007, a second round draft choice in 2008 and forward Glen Metropolit on Feb. 25, 2007.
Tkachuk, 35, was traded to Atlanta by St. Louis on February 25. At the time of the trade, he had 43 points (20 goals, 23 assists) in 61 games with the Blues. Tkachuk ranked second on the club in goals and points, while leading the club with eight power-play goals and 92 penalty minutes. He finished last season with 58 points (27 goals, 31 assists) and reached the 50-point plateau for the 12th time in 15 seasons.
The 6-2, 225-pound center has twice been named to the NHL Second All-Star Team (1995 and 1998) and played in the NHL All-Star Game four times (1997, 1998, 1999 and 2004).
The Melrose, Massachusetts native has amassed 926 career points (473 goals, 453 assists) and 2,033 penalty minutes in 976 NHL games with Winnipeg, Phoenix, St. Louis and Atlanta.
Tkachuk has represented the United States in six different international competitions, including the 1992, 1998, 2002 and 2006 Winter Games, winning a silver medal in 2002. He also played in the 1996 and 2004 World Cup of Hockey, helping the United States win the championship in 1996.
Tkachuk was originally selected by the Winnipeg Jets in the first round, 19th overall, in the 1990 NHL Entry Draft.