The Seattle Kraken have signed veteran defenceman Jamie Oleksiak as one of the first members of the NHL’s newest franchise. Daily Faceoff’s Frank Seravalli was first to break the news on the day of the expansion draft.
Later, Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman confirmed Oleksiak had signed a five-year deal at $4.6 million AAV.
Jamie Oleksiak & SEA is five years, approx $4.6M
— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) July 21, 2021
The Kraken Signs Defenceman Jamie Oleksiak
In Oleksiak, the Kraken get an experienced defenceman who is not far removed from a trip to the Stanley Cup Finals. In 2020-21, he had six goals and 14 points, adding 35 minutes in penalties in 56 games. He also ranked 15th on the season in hits (148). His possession numbers are 49.7 percent Corsi and a relative Corsi of -3.4. His offensive numbers are similar to what he had last season, while his possession numbers are down from 2019-20.
During the 2019-20 playoffs, Oleksiak helped lead the Stars to the Stanley Cup Final against the Tampa Bay Lightning. In 27 playoff games, he had five goals and four assists for nine points, adding 26 minutes in penalties, while averaging 21:38 of ice time. That was his most productive playoffs offensively.
Over his nine-year NHL career, he has played for the Stars and the Pittsburgh Penguins. He was originally drafted in the first round, 14thoverall in the 2011 NHL Draft by the Stars. In December 2017, he was traded to Pittsburgh. Then, in January 2019, the Penguins traded him back to the Stars.
So far in his career, he has 24 goals and 72 points in 369 career regular-season games. In 43 career playoff games, he has six goals and four assists for 10 points, adding 33 minutes in penalties.
What This Means for the Future
Oleksiak is just one season removed from one of the best offensive playoffs of his career, helping lead the Stars to the Stanley Cup Final. While they eventually lost to the Tampa Bay Lightning, the experience coupled with his hard-hitting, aggressive style of defense will help the Kraken immensely in their inaugural year. Oleksiak is a defenceman that is not afraid to lay a big hit or block a shot. Sure, he’s not going to put up a whole lot of points, but he still makes a difference when he’s in the lineup.
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