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Seattle Kraken select Joonas Donskoi from the Colorado Avalanche

The Avalanche will need to fill a hole in their middle-6 after Seattle selects Donskoi in the expansion draft

NHL: Colorado Avalanche at Vegas Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

While the Seattle Kraken went off the board with a number of their picks in the expansion draft, they surprised very few with who they plucked from the Colorado Avalanche roster. As a part of the expansion draft, the Kraken selected winger Joonas Donskoi over other options like J.T. Compher and Jacob MacDonald.

Coming off a career-high 17 goals last season, Donskoi became the obvious choice when general manager Joe Sakic sent Ryan Graves to the New Jersey Devils in a trade last week. The selection means that the Avalanche will lose one of their better middle-6 forwards and a guy who fit in rather well with the team’s top power play unit.

That said, Donskoi’s goal production last season was a bit misleading. The 29-year old scored 17 goals in 51 games thanks to a 19.8 shooting percentage. That’s nearly double his career average and more than five basis points abover his previous career high. A shooting percentage like that is unsustainable and points to an easily predictable decline in production from Donskoi next season. He was good for the Avs last season but likely not as good as the raw numbers would suggest.

While on the ice, losing Donskoi hurts the Avalanche lineup, his selection helps free up from valuable salary cap space for Sakic to work with. Owed $3.9m a year over the next two seasons, Donskoi’s cap hit was a little inflated for his role on the team. The Avalanche will now look to fill the hole with a cheaper option in order to re-distribute the money elsewhere.

With Donskoi off the books, the Avalanche now have a little more than $30m in cap space.

The selection also means that Seattle did not make a push to sign pending unrestricted free agent Gabriel Landeskog. The Avs will now have exclusive negotiating rights with their captain for another six days in hopes that they can get him re-signed before he hits the open market next week.

While their pick from the Avalanche was predictable, many of Seattle’s picks were not. Here is the full list as it currently stands (I’m sure ESPN is thrilled this all leaked before their broadcast):

Seattle Kraken Expansion Draft

Anaheim Ducks Haydn Fleury D $1.3M
Arizona Coyotes Tyler Pitlick RW $1.75M
Boston Bruins Jeremy Lauzon D $850K
Buffalo Sabres Will Borgen D RFA
Calgary Flames Mark Giordano D $6.75M
Carolina Hurricanes Morgan Geekie C/W RFA
Chicago Blackhawks - - -
Colorado Avalanche Joonas Donskoi RW $3.9M
Columbus Blue Jackets Gavin Bayreuther D UFA
Dallas Stars Jamie Oleksiak D UFA
Detroit Red Wings - - -
Edmonton Oilers Adam Larsson D UFA
Florida Panthers Chris Driedger G UFA
Los Angeles Kings Kurtis MacDermid D $875K
Minnesota Wild Carson Soucy D $2.75M
Montreal Canadiens Cale Fleury D RFA
Nashville Predators Calle Jarnkrok C/W $2M
New Jersey Devils Nathan Bastian RW $825K
New York Islanders Jordan Eberle RW $5.5M
New York Rangers Colin Blackwell C/W $725K
Ottawa Senators Joey Daccord G $750K
Philadelphia Flyers Carsen Twarynski LW RFA
Pittsburgh Penguins Brandon Tanev LW $3.5M
San Jose Sharks Alexander True C RFA
St. Louis Blues Vince Dunn D RFA
Tampa Bay Lightning Yanni Gourde C $5.17M
Toronto Maple Leafs Jared McCann C/W $2.94M
Vancouver Canucks Kole Lind RW RFA
Washington Capitals Vitek Vanecek G $717K
Winnipeg Jets Mason Appleton RW $900K