What was rumored came to pass on Wednesday night at the NHL’s Seattle expansion draft, as the Kraken used their pick from the Pittsburgh Penguins to select forward Brandon Tanev.
Brandon is in the house!!— Seattle Kraken (@SeattleKraken) July 22, 2021
Welcome to Seattle! pic.twitter.com/PyQ7lfgirX
It was a somewhat surprising move on the surface, especially since Seattle didn’t take that many forwards with long contracts and/or hefty salary cap hits. One exception they made was for Tanev, who has had two solid and eventful seasons in Pittsburgh.
Tanev’s loss will be a blow to the Pens, but one they have all off-season to address. Free agency begins a week from today, and the trade market re-opens tomorrow afternoon. While Tanev leaves a hole in the depth chart in Pittsburgh, he also takes his annual $3.5 million salary cap hit with him. That brings a valuable chance for the Pens to re-shape their team with a new player or two as they hope to surround their core players with a chance to make another deep playoff run.
Fare thee well to the long-haired wildman who was always at the ready to remind the opposition of their status. The last two seasons of Pens’ hockey has been overall fairly tough between constant injuries, a worldwide pandemic and early playoff losses, but Tanev’s play and personality was a big injection of color and fun with him in the picture. Best of luck to him in Seattle for the next chapter of his career, he’s carved out a nice little niche as a cult favorite that will linger for years to come.