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Blue Jackets acquire D Severson from Devils in sign-and-trade

Damon Severson New Jersey Devils Damon Severson - The Canadian Press

The Columbus Blue Jackets acquired defenceman Damon Severson from New Jersey Devils on Friday in a sign-and-trade deal.

Severson, a pending unrestricted free agent, signed an eight-year, $50 million contract as part of the trade. The contract will carry an annual cap hit of $6.25 million, 

In return for Severson, the Devils received a 2023 third-round pick, which sits at 80th overall. 

Severson, 28, played last season with the New Jersey Devils where he recorded seven goals and 33 points in 81 games.

He also added a goal and three points in 12 playoff games before the Devils were eliminated by the Carolina Hurricanes in five games in the second round.

"Damon is a versatile defenseman who has great vision, moves the puck extremely well, has good size and can play heavy minutes at both ends of the ice," Blue Jackets general manager Jarmo Kekalainen said. "We are excited to have him join the Blue Jackets as he will be a very important part of our blueline for many years to come."

The 6-foot-2 defenceman had a career season in 2021-22, tallying 11 goals and 46 points in 80 games.

Drafted 60th overall by the Devils in the 2012 draft, Severson has played his entire nine-year career in New Jersey, recording 58 goals and 263 points in 647 games.

He is coming off a six-year, $25 million deal he signed with the Devils in September of 2017.

Severson represented Canada at the 2019 and 2022 IIHF World Championships where he helped guide country to two silver medals after recording three goals and 14 points in 20 games.


Blue Jackets stay busy

The Blue Jackets make another add to their blueline with Friday's trade after acquiring Ivan Provorov in a three-way trade earlier this week.

The Blue Jackets parted ways with a 2023 first-round pick, which previously belonged to the Los Angeles Kings, and a second-round pick as part of their exchange for Provorov.

"Improving our blue line has been a priority for us and acquiring Ivan gives us an established left-shot defenseman who is still a young player with his best seasons in front of him," Kekalainen said afterwards. "He immediately improves our group on defense as he is durable, has great skill, skates well, is an excellent passer with an accurate shot and can effectively play at both ends of the ice."

Columbus is expected to hire Mike Babcock as their new head coach after his contract with the Toronto Maple Leafs expires on June 30.