The NHL’s trade deadline isn’t until Tuesday, but the Blackhawks have already made a move.
On Thursday the Hawks traded defenseman Lucas Carlsson and forward Lucas Wallmark to the Panthers for forward Brett Connolly, defenseman Riley Stillman, and center Henrik Borgstrom. Chicago also receives a seventh round pick in the 2021 NHL Draft.
For Chicago, Borgstrom is likely the key to the deal. The 23rd overall pick in the 2016 NHL Draft, Borgstrom is a big center (6-3, 200) who is currently playing in Finland for HIFK Helsinki. He’s a left-handed shot who has 11 goals in 27 games this season.
Borgstrom has appeared in 58 NHL games for the Panthers, scoring nine goals with 10 assists. He played his college hockey at the University of Denver, where he was a teammate of Ian Mitchell’s in 2017-18. Coming out of DU, Borgstrom was a highly touted offensive threat. But he never translated that into the NHL. He is currently unsigned by the Panthers. He will turn 24 in early August.
Connolly, 28, was the sixth overall pick in the 2010 NHL Draft by the Lightning. A right wing listed at 6-3 and 198 pounds, he has two goals and two assists in 21 games for the Panthers this season. In 517 regular season games in the NHL, Connolly has scored 100 goals with 92 assists. His best season was 2018-19 with the Capitals; he scored 22 goals with 24 assists.
Connolly has two more years on his contract after the 2021 season that carry a $3.5M cap hit.
Stillman, 23, was originally drafted in the fourth round (#114 overall) in the 2016 NHL Draft. He has appeared in 43 NHL games over three seasons, picking up five assists along the way. He’s a left-handed shot who is listed at 6-1 and 196 pounds. Stillman is a RFA after this season and has a $773,333 cap hit.