The Seattle Kraken traded defenseman and team captain Mark Giordano and forward Colin Blackwell to the Toronto Maple Leafs in exchange for two second-round draft picks and one third-round pick.
The Kraken get a 2022 second-round pick, a 2023 second-round pick, and a 2024 third-round pick in exchange for Giordano and Blackwell. Seattle is also paying 50% of Giordano’s remaining salary.
“We want to thank Mark for his time with the Kraken,” general manager Ron Francis said in a statement. “As the organization’s first captain, he had an immediate and lasting impact both on and off the ice.
“We appreciate the energy, passion and hard work Colin brings to the rink every day and wish him and Mark all the best in Toronto.”
Giordano, 38, is a native of Toronto and will now have the chance to play in his hometown. He was in the final year of his contract and will be a free agent after the season. The Kraken kept him out of their last two games against the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Detroit Red Wings as trade talks continued.
The Kraken are tied with the Arizona Coyotes for the second-worst league record with just 44 points in 63 games. Only the 43 points of the Montreal Canadiens are worse. Giordano wants to play for a winning team and Seattle isn’t this season. Still, he said Friday he’s enjoying being part of Seattle’s expansion efforts after 15 years with the Calgary Flames.
“I’m happy to be part of something, like building something here,” Giordano said. “Being made captain is something I don’t take for granted and for the organization to put the ‘C’ on my shirt this year means a lot. I look at a lot of the relationships I’ve made this year, the guys I I’ve never met before. So it’s been a pretty cool experience. I know, obviously we didn’t get the results we wanted, but I think there’s a lot of positives to take from how this thing was built and is being built.”
Giordano has 23 points (six goals, 17 assists) in 55 games for Seattle this season. After an uneven start to the year which was exacerbated by a 10-day stint on the COVID-19 roster, Giordano has played really well in recent months. He scored 15 points in his last 30 games played with three goals in that span, including two shorthanded.
Blackwell, 28, has eight goals and nine assists in 39 appearances for Kraken this season. Blackwell was coming off a career-high 22 points (12 goals, 10 assists) last year with the New York Rangers when Seattle selected him in the expansion draft. Blackwell provides great energy as a forward of the last six.
The Maple Leafs had to swing another trade to be able to bring Giordano and Blackwell to Toronto. They dealt defenseman Travis Dermott to the Vancouver Canucks for a third-round draft pick to free up salary cap space for the trade with Seattle.
The Giordano/Blackwell trade is the second of the past week for Seattle. They also dealt forward Calle Jarnkrok to the Flames in exchange for a trio of draft picks over the next three seasons. The Kraken now have 11 selections in the first three rounds of the next two drafts.
The NHL trade deadline arrives at 12 a.m. PT Monday.
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