Chicago Trades Erik Gustafsson, Robin Lehner For Draft Picks

The Chicago Blackhawks made a couple of moves at the 2020 trade deadline, including sending defenseman Erik Gustafsson to the Calgary Flames for a 2020 3rd round pick, and dealing goaltender Robin Lehner to the Vegas Golden Knights for Malcolm Subban, prospect Slava Demin, and Pittsburgh’s 2nd round pick in the 2020 NHL draft.


It was a three-way trade between the Chicago Blackhawks, Vegas Golden Knights, and Toronto Maple Leafs sent Lehner to Toronto ($2,500,000 retained) and a 5th round pick from Vegas. Toronto then flipped Lehner to Vegas ($1,100,000 retained) and signing rights to Martins Dzierkals. Malcolm Subban, rights to Slava Demin, and Pittsburgh’s 2020 2nd round pick headed back to Chicago. Chicago has its own 1st, Pittsburgh’s 2nd, their own 3rd, and Calgary’s 3rd from the Gustafsson trade. They don’t have their own 2nd round pick because they dealt it in an offseason trade to re-acquire Andrew Shaw.


Erik Gustafsson is a 27-year old defenseman making $1.2 million and is set to become an unrestricted free agent on July 1st. In the six seasons of data we have on him, he has a +0.12 career AB score. However, he is coming off the worst individual AB season of his career last season with a -4.41, and three of his last four seasons have been negative individually. In 59 games with the Blackhawks, Gustafsson scored 6 goals and registered 20 assists for 26 points. So far in Calgary, he has played 7 games, in which he has registered 3 assists for 3 points. For a defenseman, he has a solid penalty taken/drawn ratio during his time with both teams, as the ratio was 9:5 in Chicago and is 1:0 in Calgary. Gustafsson doesn’t have equally impressive giveaway/takeaway ratios in either city however, as it was 53:21 in Chicago, and currently is 5:0 in Calgary. He has a -9 +/- number on the season as well. Under 2nd-year head coach Jeremy Colliton, Gustafsson was averaging about 30 seconds more ice time than his previous career average of 19:59 per night. However, in Calgary under Geoff Ward, he is playing almost two fewer minutes than he was in Chicago at 18:01.


Robin Lehner has been playing excellent hockey over the past couple of seasons. In 2018-19 with the Islanders, he had a .930 save percentage with a 25-13-5 record in 46 games played. He won the Bill Masterton Trophy given to the player that best exemplifies dedication, sportsmanship, and commitment to hockey, and finished in 3rd place in the Vezina Trophy race that season. With Chicago this season, Lehner had a 16-10-5 record in 33 games played, with a .918 save percentage. In three games with Vegas so far, he has a .940 save percentage, a 3-0 record, and a shutout. Much more to come, as the Hawks continue to attempt to make an improbable playoff run sitting eight points out of the 2nd wildcard spot in the Western Conference.


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