Seattle Kraken Player Preview: C Colin Blackwell
Versatile forward Colin Blackwell gives the Seattle Kraken solid depth entering their first season.
Selected From: New York Rangers
Contract: 1 yr. left at $725,000
2020-21 Season Stats: 47 GP – 10 G – 12 A – 22 P, +2
The Seattle Kraken added depth by selecting Colin Blackwell with their expansion draft pick from the New York Rangers.
Blackwell’s emergence over the past year makes him a player to watch as the Kraken solidify their lineup. The 28-year-old was taken in the seventh round of the 2011 draft by the San Jose Sharks. After only suiting up for their AHL affiliate, Blackwell bounced around the minors before debuting with the Nashville Predators in 2018-19. He appeared in 33 games across two seasons with Nashville before claiming a larger role last season in New York.
Blackwell played in 47 games for the Rangers during the 2020-21 season, more than he’d played in his entire NHL career to that point. He recorded 12 of his 15 career goals and 22 of his 32 career points last season, solidifying himself as a useful depth forward. Blackwell was somewhat surprisingly left unprotected in the expansion draft, and the Kraken scooped him up after seeing the potential he displayed last season.
Seattle Kraken Outlook
Blackwell joins a deep forward unit in Seattle but has a chance to earn a significant role with a strong camp showing. He will be battling young forwards Morgan Geekie and Nathan Bastian as well as proven free-agent additions Riley Sheahan and Ryan Donato. There may only be two spots to be had between the five forwards, but each could see significant playing time this season.
Blackwell and the other Kraken depth forwards could rotate in and out of the lineup in Seattle’s inaugural season. Since most of the team is playing together for the first time, the first few games of the season will be a work in progress. Chemistry will be developed on the fly, and many players could get a shot and make their NHL debuts as well. Blackwell should see playing time even if he’s inactive on opening night, and has a chance to continue his recent success in his new home.