Examining the Liam Tanner for Carter Cochrane and Jaeger Murdock trade

On Sept. 29, the Powell River Kings struck a trade with the Coquitlam Express where they acquired Carter Cochrane and Jaeger Murdock for Liam Tanner.

Both Cochrane and Murdock are forwards. Cochrane is a 20-year-old in his final junior hockey season while Murdock is an 18-year-old in his third season in the BC Hockey League. As for Tanner, he’s a 19-year-old forward playing his third BCHL season.

Before this deal, Cochrane and Murdock played for a number of teams while Tanner played several seasons in Chilliwack before heading to the Express.

For this article, I’ll trace each player’s path and examine what each team got from the trade.

Tanner’s path

Tanner started with the Delta Hockey Academy program, playing two seasons at DHA before joining the Fraser Valley Thunderbirds U18 AAA club.

After two seasons with the T-Birds, Tanner made his BCHL debut, getting into one game as an affiliate player for the Chilliwack Chiefs during the 2019-20 season.

During the 2021 Pod season, he earned a permanent roster spot with the Chiefs and scored three goals and six assists in 20 games. Last season, Tanner dressed for 54 games for Chilliwack and finished with 10 goals and 17 assists.

This past June, Tanner was traded to Penticton, completing an earlier trade between the Vees and Chilliwack. In January, the Chiefs acquired Anthony Allepot from Penticton for future considerations

His time in the Peach City was brief and 15 days later, Tanner and future considerations were traded to Powell River for Ben Brunette.

Cochrane’s path

Cochrane’s path to junior hockey started in the Canadian Sport School Hockey League at the Burnaby Winter Club. From 2017 to 2019, Cochrane made appearances with a number of BWC teams.

In 2018-19, Cochrane made his BCHL debut with the Prince George Spruce Kings as an affiliate player. From 2019-20 through 2020-21, the Victoria, BC product got into 77 games for the Spruce Kings.

In June 2021, Cochrane was part of a multi-player trade alongside Murdock and goaltender Jesse Makaj that saw them go from Prince George to Coquitlam in exchange for Austin Fraser and Andrej Kovacevic.

A separate trade tree is needed to examine this trade, so to keep things concise, I’ll keep this section brief.

Murdock’s path

Like Tanner and Cochrane, Murdock played in the CSSHL at the Delta Hockey Academy and Burnaby Winter Club. Murdock played the 2017-18 season at DHA and from 2018 to 2020, Murdock played at BWC.

As an affiliate player during 2019-20, Murdock made his BCHL debut with the Nanaimo Clippers. He spent the 2021 season with the Clippers in the Port Alberni Pod. However, on June 1 of that year, he was traded twice.

The first deal saw Murdock and future considerations go from Nanaimo to the Spruce Kings for forward Austin Spiridakis. That same day, Murdock was part of the same multi-player trade along with Cochrane and Makaj that sent them from PG to Coquitlam.

Evaluating the trade

When evaluating the trade, the Express ended up with a point producer. Last season, Tanner scored 27 points in 54 games. By trading two players, Coquitlam also got roster flexibility. They can choose to fill the roster spot however they please.

As for the Kings, they got a veteran player and a long-term player. Cochrane will age out after this season. He can provide veteran leadership for the team. Meanwhile, Murdock has two more seasons of junior hockey left.

Both teams got an immediate benefit from this trade. There are also potential future benefits. In the end, I’m declaring both teams as winners. We’ll see how this trade plays out in the future.