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NHL Notebook: Day 2 of 2024 NHL Draft brings a storm of trades

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Photo credit:Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports
Aleena Aksenchuk
19 days ago
All 32 NHL organizations made their way to Las Vegas over the weekend for one of the most exciting times of the year: the NHL Draft.
Other than picking up a few new prospects, teams did not hold off on making moves on the trade front to strengthen their depth and increase their chances of becoming the next team to hoist the Stanley Cup. 
Although Day 1 saw NHL teams exchanging mostly picks, Day 2 on Saturday was quite the opposite, and a handful of deals were made. Here’s a look at some of the trades that have gone on around the NHL during Day 2 of the NHL Draft. 
Tampa Bay Lightning trade Mikhail Sergachev to the Utah Hockey Club
This was a swap that caught everyone by surprise on Saturday morning.
The six-foot-one defender did not come in a simple one-for-one deal. In exchange, Utah sent defenceman J.J. Moser, forward Conor Geekie, the 199th overall selection at this year’s draft (Noah Steen), and a second-round pick in the 2025 Draft to the Lightning. 
Sergachev appeared in 34 games with the Lightning this season, scoring two goals and 19 points, but was sidelined for the remainder of the season with a broken leg. Although the injury was expected to be season-ending, he returned for two games with the Lightning during the 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs. The Nizhnekamsk, Russia native has spent all but four games of his career with the Lightning, recording 48 goals and 257 points across 471 games. Additionally, Sergachev was a part of the team that won two back-to-back Stanley Cups (2020 and 2021).
Moser collected five goals and 26 points with the Arizona Coyotes this season. The 24-year-old defender is a restricted free agent looking to ink a new deal this summer. 
Geekie was considered one of the top prospects for Utah. The 20-year-old scored 43 goals and 99 points throughout 55 WHL games split between the Wenatchee Wild and Swift Current Broncos this past season. 
Sergachev, meanwhile, has six years left paying him $8.5-million per year, according to PuckPedia.
Las Vegas Golden Knights trade Logan Thompson to Washington Capitals
During the second round, the host Las Vegas Golden Knights announced they had traded goaltender Logan Thompson to the Washington Capitals.
The Golden Knights acquired a third-round pick in this year’s draft (Pavel Moysevich) and a 2025 third-round selection in the trade. 
Thompson has spent his entire career with the Las Vegas organization, signing with the team in the summer of 2020. Although he only appeared in one game during the 2020-21 season, he burst into the NHL scene the following year, appearing in 19 games with a .914 save percentage and 2.68 goals against average following Robin Lehner’s season-ending injury. 
In 103 NHL games, Thompson’s record is 95-56-32, with a 2.67 goals against average and a .912 save percentage. 
Thompson will be heading into the final season of his three-year contract with a $766,667 cap hit, according to PuckPedia.
St. Louis Blues Trade Kevin Hayes to Pittsburgh Penguins
Minutes after the Utah Hockey Club acquired Mikhail Sergachev, the St. Louis Blues made a move of their own, trading forward Kevin Hayes to the Pittsburgh Penguins. 
Alongside the 32-year-old forward, the Blues also sent a 2025 second-round pick in the deal to receive future considerations from the Penguins. 
Hayes will enter the sixth season of a seven-year contract with a $7.142 million cap hit, with the Flyers retaining 50 percent of the cap hit. However, due to his trade to the Blues last year, the Penguins will only retain $3,571,429 for the last two seasons of his deal.
This past season, Hayes collected 13 goals and 29 points, with a 57.0 per cent faceoff success rate. However, his defensive results were much more disappointing, as he carried a 45.5 per cent expected goal share.
Dallas Stars trade the rights to Chris Tanev to the Toronto Maple Leafs
As the final picks began during the 2024 NHL Draft, the Toronto Maple Leafs ended with a huge deal to acquire the rights to Dallas Stars defenceman Chris Tanev. 
In exchange, the Stars acquired forward Max Ellis and a 2026 seventh-round selection. 
Tanev, who happens to be a Toronto, Ontario native, will become a free agent on Monday if a deal isn’t made in the coming days due to his contract expiring with the completion of the 2023-24 season. 
Tanev has been one of the most talked about players since the end of the playoffs and throughout the 2024 trade deadline when he was acquired by the Stars from the Calgary Flames. 
The 34-year-old fit like a glove into the Dallas lineup helping the team to become one of the top contenders during the 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs. Tanev recorded one goal and five points throughout 19 regular season games with the Stars with an additional two assists and 73 blocked shots during the 19 playoff games. 
Ellis is still waiting to make his NHL debut but has spent the last two seasons with the American Hockey League’s Toronto Marlies. In 87 AHL career games, he has collected 14 goals and 34 points.

Sabres will buyout the remainder of Jeff Skinner’s contract

On Saturday, Kevyn Adam, the Buffalo Sabres general manager, announced that the club will buy out the remaining three years of Jeff Skinner’s eight-year deal.
The forward currently holds a $9 million cap hit across the next three seasons. Following the buyout, the Sabres will retain a $1.4 million cap hit in 2024-25, $4.4 million in 2025-26, and a heavy price of $6.4 million in the final year and $2.4 million annually against the cap, according to PuckPedia.
Skinner originally signed the eight-year $72 million contract with former general manager Jason Botterill in June 2019. Since inking his deal, Skinner has recorded 153 goals across six seasons with the team. His average ice time was 15:59 last season, with an additional 2:35 per night on the power play.
The 32-year-old has not held back in scoring,, which puts him at the likes of the Nashville Predators, Detroit Red Wings, Calgary Flames, New York Islanders, New York Rangers, and Toronto Maple Leafs, who could all use some secondary scoring.
However, for the Sabres, buying out the forward gives them a projected $31.7 million in cap space to work with over the following season.
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