In a rare playoff-time trade, the Carolina Hurricanes have dealt Marcus Kruger and a 2018 third-round pick to the Arizona Coyotes for Jordan Martinook and a 2018 fourth-rounder.
Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman was first to report the transaction, which was confirmed by both teams minutes later.
“We are very pleased to add Marcus to the Coyotes,” the team’s general manager John Chayka said in a press release. “Marcus is a solid, two-way centre who is very responsible defensively and has good speed and skill. He’s an excellent penalty-killer and will provide us with good depth at the centre ice position.”
As part of the deal, the Hurricanes will retain 10 per cent of Kruger’s salary. The 27-year-old centre is entering the final year of a three-year, $9.25-million deal he signed in 2016 when he was a member of the Chicago Blackhawks.
Kruger had one goal and five assists in 48 games in his lone season with the Hurricanes. He also registered four goals, four assists in 19 games with the AHL’s Charlotte Checkers. Kruger was traded by Chicago to the Vegas Golden Knights on July 2, 2017 but two days later was flipped to Carolina for a 2018 fifth-round selection.
Meanwhile, Martinook is leaving the franchise that drafted him in the second round in 2012. The 25-year-old had six goals, nine assists and 45 penalty minutes in 81 games this past season. He has one year remaining on his contract with a $1.8-million salary cap hit. Both he and Kruger are slated to become unrestricted free agents in 2019.
“Jordan is a physical player who kills penalties,” Hurricanes president and acting GM Don Waddell said in a press release. “This gives us some options with our forward group as we head toward the next season.”