The Tampa Bay Lightning announced earlier that they have acquired 23-year-old left winger, Brandon Hagel of the Chicago Blackhawks, and two 4th round picks in 2022 and 2024, in exchange for Wingers Boris Katchouk, Taylor Raddysh, a 1st round pick in 2023, and a 1st round pick in 2024.
What Hagel is Bringing to Tampa
Hagel has had quite the season, scoring 21 goals and having 16 assists in 55 games played. With an average of 2.6 goals per game, it’s easy to see why the media is already calling him the “Coleman” of 2022.
General Manager Julien BriseBois has had a recent history of making these kinds of signings/trades during the trade deadline, and they certainly have paid off until now. It’s safe to say that without Blake Coleman, Barclay Goodrow, David Savard, and Zach Bogosian, the Tampa Bay Lightning would not have won either of the last two Stanely Cups.
Hagel is a middle-six forward who loves to attack off the rush, and he draws a lot of penalties which is great for offensive opportunities. He was one of the best forecheckers on the Blackhawks and is constantly disrupting attempts to exit the zone. His passing is key to his game, despite being more of a goalscorer. I’m personally very excited to see what the kid brings to Tampa and how this helps our chances of a repeat.
How Else Tampa Benefits In the Long-term
Despite having lost two young great players in Boris Katchouk and Taylor Raddysh, The Bolts have freed up a ton of cap space that can be used to our advantage in the offseason. Both players make roughly $750k each, and Hagel is signed for $1.5m, which saves Tampa roughly $16,667.
That may not seem like much now, but for getting a “Yanni Gourde” or “Blake Coleman” type player, any money we save is a huge win. Hagel will be playing tomorrow night in Tampa’s tilt against the New York Rangers, so I’m sure we will be seeing the fruits of Julien BreisBois’s labor very soon.