With the NHL trade deadline just hours away, the weekend flurry of trade activity continued early Monday morning with a deal between the Penguins and Kings.
The Penguins are acquiring forward Jeff Carter from the Kings in exchange for two conditional draft picks: a 2022 third-round pick and a 2023 fourth-round pick.
Should the Penguins reach the Stanley Cup Final and Carter plays in at least 50% of the games, the third becomes a second. The 2023 fourth-rounder becomes a third-rounder if Carter plays in at least 50 games next season.
The Kings are also retaining 50% of Carter’s remaining salary as part of the deal. He is signed through the end of the 2021-22 season at a salary cap hit of $5.272M per season.
This is the first major roster move the Penguins have made since the hiring of Ron Hextall as the team’s new general manager, and it sees him acquiring a significant player that he has ties to from his days in the Philadelphia and Los Angeles front offices.
Carter, 36, has eight goals and 11 assists in 40 games this season for the Kings.
Carter’s fit in Pittsburgh
Where Jeff Carter ends up fitting in the Pittsburgh lineup is going to be interesting, but a safe assumption would be on the third line once all of their forwards return to the lineup. Evgeni Malkin and Kasperi Kapanen remain sidelined at the moment due to injury. When they do return they will likely be the focal point of a second line that would feature either Jared McCann or Jason Zucker on the other wing. Whichever player is not on the second line would presumably skate on the third line alongside Carter.
It was expected that the Penguins would make some kind of a move before Monday’s trade deadline, but this particular move is a bit of a surprise. All of the talk centered around the team adding a big, physical forward. And while Carter sort of fits that description, he also can bring some scoring punch to the bottom-six. He is not the 30-40 goal scorer he was at his peak, but his current production as a third-liner — as well as his ability to drive possession a bit — is more than satisfactory in third-line role. Especially when it only costs the Penguins two future mid-round draft picks while the Kings retain half of the salary.
Adam Gretz is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at email@example.com or follow him on Twitter @AGretz.
CHICAGO — Blackhawks forward Boris Katchouk will be sidelined for four to six weeks with a left ankle sprain, the team announced Sunday.
The 24-year-old Katchouk played almost 12 minutes during a 3-0 preseason loss to Detroit on Saturday night. He was acquired in a multiplayer trade with Tampa Bay in March.
The Blackhawks open the season on Oct. 12 at Colorado.
The team also said forward Jujhar Khaira is day to day with a right ankle injury.
ANAHEIM, Calif. — Ducks defenseman Urho Vaakanainen was taken off the Honda Center ice on a stretcher after he crashed into the end boards in the first period of Anaheim’s preseason game against the San Jose Sharks.
The Finnish defenseman was conscious and alert with full movement in his extremities at UCI Medical Center, the Ducks said.
The frightening incident occurred midway through the opening period when Vaakanainen smashed into the boards at a dangerous speed behind the Sharks’ net. Vaakanainen appeared to be concentrating on the pass he had just made to Derek Grant, who scored the Ducks’ opening goal on the assist.
Vaakanainen’s teammates came onto the ice and gathered around him as he was taken away on the stretcher.
The Ducks acquired the 23-year-old Vaakanainen from Boston last March in the deal that sent longtime Ducks defenseman Hampus Lindholm to the Bruins. After recording two assists in 14 games for the Ducks last season, Vaakanainen is attempting to win a top-six role on Anaheim’s defense this fall.
TAMPA, Fla. — The Tampa Bay Lightning and team owner Jeff Vinik are donating $2 million toward Hurricane Ian relief efforts.
The NHL team announced that $1 million each will be donated by the Tampa Bay Lightning Foundation and the Vinik Family Foundation.
“This is a tragic situation for many families and communities across the state of Florida, but especially so in the southwest region of the state,” Vinik said in a statement released by the team. “In times like these the most important thing we can do is support one another, and we hope this donation will help families recover and rebuild in the months to come.”
Ian made landfall Wednesday on Florida’s Gulf Coast, south of the Tampa Bay area. The Lightning postponed two home preseason games and moved the club’s training camp to Nashville, Tennessee, during the storm.
TORONTO — Rasmus Sandin has signed a two-year, $2.8 million contract with the Toronto Maple Leafs, the club announced on Thursday.
The 22-year-old from Sweden was the 29th overall selection in the 2018 draft. Sandin had 16 points in 51 games with Toronto last season. He’s played in 88 career regular-season games, with six goals and 22 assists, and has one goal in five playoff games.
“Got a great set of tools,” fellow defenseman Jake Muzzin said. “With experience, I think they’re only going to get better.”
The signing comes as the Leafs’ blueliners been hit hard by injuries. Muzzin has been dealing with a back issue, and Timothy Liljegren recently had surgery for a hernia.
Toronto then lost Jamie Benn (groin) and Carl Dahlstrom (shoulder) in Wednesday’s 3-0 preseason victory over the Montreal Canadiens, pressing forwards Calle Jarnkrok and Alexander Kerfoot into defensive roles for two periods.