Brandon and St. Louis Agree To Trade Pickles. For Pickles?by Sean Gallagher | December 12, 2018, 10:28 PM ET
Two teams with different goals. Two teams with different coveted assets. Two teams with guys nicknamed Pickles.
This was a deal that just had to be done.
When Brandon GM Doug Karnes let the SICHL know last weekend that he intended to start rebuilding his Wheat Kings, a swarm of scouts descended upon the team. Among them, St. Louis' professional scouts and their GM, Sean Gallagher.
"We weren't looking for anything in particular," said Gallagher, "I like our roster. But you never know if there's a way to make yourself better. You have to check."
The Spartans staff quickly zeroed in on one such player, Marc-Edouard Vlasic, the quietly dominant defensemen with the equally excellent nickname of Pickles. Over the next few days the two general managers exchanged ideas on potential trades before settling on Vlasic for defenseman Luca Sbisa and versatile forward Blake Coleman.
"Initially, I didn't want to do the deal," admitted Gallagher, "Both of those guys were playing crucial roles for our team and both were enjoying strong statistical starts to the season. I was hoping to trade assets that wouldn't affect our pro roster quite so much. But in the end, I had to admit that it was a reasonable offer.
"I especially hated giving up Coleman. I've watched him closely since we drafted him back in 2011 and all through his development at the University of Miami-Ohio. I love the progression he has made. I expected him to be one of those long-time Spartans who played up and down the lineup. Great character guy. I hated letting him go."
The crazy coincidence of the trade didn't become apparent until the next day, when Gallagher says he was conversing with fellow GM Eric Schneider.
"He mentioned the trade for Pickles and I immediatly thought, 'he means the trade OF Pickles' because that's Blake's nickname. Then it hit me - I just traded Pickles for Pickles."
Coleman earned the same nickname as Vlasic for a very different reason. Last year, as a rookie, Coleman's penchant for drinking pickle juice during games became social media fodder when he was spotted drinking it straight out of the jar while in the penalty box. The nickname was swiftly applied and now Coleman even has his own brand of pickle juice for sale.
"I wish I just had both Pickles," said Gallagher, "But who knows, maybe our new guy can start a pickle juice company, too."