Maple Leafs land Giordano, Blackwell from Kraken

Posted: 20/03/2022 in NHL
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Mark Giordano is headed home.

The Toronto Maple Leafs acquired the veteran defenseman, as well as forward Colin Blackwell, from the Seattle Kraken in exchange for two second-round picks and a third-rounder, the team announced Sunday.

Seattle is retaining 50% of Giordano’s $6.75-million cap hit. The Toronto native will be an unrestricted free agent at season’s end.

The second-rounders are in 2022 and 2023, while the third-round pick is in 2024.

Giordano has recorded six goals and 17 assists in 55 games while averaging 21:29 of ice time per contest with the Kraken in 2021-22. The 38-year-old’s offensive game has declined with age, but he’s still posting elite defensive metrics this campaign.

Giordano spent the first 15 years of his career with the Calgary Flames before the Kraken selected him in the expansion draft. He won the Norris Trophy in 2018-19 while playing alongside current Leafs blue-liner T.J. Brodie. If Toronto plans to reunite the pair, its blue line could look something like this at full health:

Morgan RiellyIlya Lyubushkin
Mark GiordanoT.J. Brodie
Jake Muzzin*Justin Holl
Rasmus SandinTimothy Liljegren

*Currently injured

Blackwell, meanwhile, has tallied eight goals and nine assists in 39 games in a bottom-six role for the Kraken. The 5-foot-9, 190-pound winger has played in 119 career NHL games between the Nashville Predators, New York Rangers, and Seattle, registering 49 points. He’s posted solid underlying numbers over the past three seasons.

The 28-year-old carries a cap hit of $725,000 and will be a UFA at the end of the campaign. He projects to slot in on Toronto’s fourth line.

The Maple Leafs cleared cap space to facilitate this deal by waiving Petr Mrazek and trading Travis Dermott to the Vancouver Canucks on Sunday.

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