The Seattle Kraken may have a serious breakout candidate in expansion draft selection Jared McCann.
Selected From: Toronto Maple Leafs
Contract: 1 yr. left at $2.94 million AAV
2020-21 Season Stats: 43 GP – 14 G – 18 A – 32 P, + 17
The Seattle Kraken used their expansion draft pick from the Toronto Maple Leafs to select forward Jared McCann.
Forward Jared McCann has all the makings of a high-impact player for the Seattle Kraken. He was a first-round pick of the Vancouver Canucks in 2014 but only spent one year with them before being dealt to the Florida Panthers. In his 143 games with the Panthers over parts of three seasons, McCann only produced 53 points. He was dealt again halfway through the 2018-19 season as part of the Derick Brassard/Nick Bjugstad trade with the Pittsburgh Penguins. McCann has spent the last three seasons with the Pens, collecting 39 goals and 84 points in 141 games.
Before the expansion draft roster freeze, the Penguins dealt McCann to the Toronto Maple Leafs in exchange for prospect Filip Hallander and a seventh-round pick. He was left exposed in the expansion draft and made for an easy selection by Ron Francis. McCann will be looking to build on his strong performance in Pittsburgh as he joins the expansion franchise.
Seattle Kraken Outlook
McCann looks likely to join Seattle’s top-six forward group, and his ability to play both center and wing makes him a valuable asset. He is very strong defensively and should fit in well with the team’s defensive core. McCann didn’t face very stiff competition when playing with the Penguins, but his assumed increase in minutes with the Kraken could see him face more talented opponents.
If placed in the middle-six, which seems likely, McCann could play with former teammate Brandon Tanev. The two have similar hard-nosed playing styles and are familiar with each other, which is uncommon with an expansion team. McCann’s strong shot combined with Tanev’s motor and relentless forecheck could spell success for Seattle.