The Blackhawks have acquired Nikita Zaitsev, two draft picks from the Senators

Emily KaplanESPN1 minute to read

The Chicago Blackhawks got more capital with a trade to the Ottawa Senators on Wednesday night.

The Blackhawks acquired veteran Nikita Zaitsev, a 2023 second-round pick and 2026 fourth-round pick from Ottawa in exchange for future considerations.

Zaitsev, 31, has a cap of $4.5 million through the 2023-24 season. He had a limited non-trade clause, but Chicago was on his list of approved teams.

The defender has played 28 games with the Senators this season, his fourth with the team, and has five assists. He also played for the Toronto Maple Leafs from 2016-19.

Chicago is in the midst of a rebuild, with General Manager Kyle Davidson trying to get as many picks and projections as possible. With Wednesday’s trade, the Blackhawks now have five draft picks through the first two rounds of the 2023 NHL Draft.

Conor Bedard, who is likely to be first-choice, highlights what analysts describe as a historically talented upper-class heavyweight.

“We are getting a defensive lineman of NHL caliber and we are getting very valuable project capital on this upcoming project and beyond,” Davidson said in a statement. Nikita gives us extra depth on the right flank and we expect him to join us soon.

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