The Chicago Blackhawks announced today that they have acquired defenseman Slater Koekkoek (KOO-KOO) and a fifth-round pick in the 2019 National Hockey League Draft in exchange for defenseman Jan Rutta and a 2019 seventh-round pick. Koekkoek's contract has an AAV of $865,000 and is signed through the 2018-19 season.
Koekkoek, 24, has spent time with the Tampa Bay Lightning and Syracuse Crunch of the American Hockey League this season. In nine games with the Lightning, he has one goal. He recorded one assist in five games with the Crunch.
Originally selected with the 10th overall pick in the 2012 NHL Draft, Koekkoek played parts of five seasons (2014-18) with Tampa Bay, compiling five goals and nine helpers in 85 regular-season games. He picked up an assist in 10 Stanley Cup Playoff contests during the 2016 postseason. During the 2017-18 campaign, he tallied NHL career highs with four goals and eight points. Koekkoek registered 12 goals and 43 assists in 185 career regular-season games with Syracuse. He added eight points (1G, 7A) in 25 Calder Cup Playoff games.
A native of North Dundas, Ontario, Koekkoek played his junior hockey with the Peterborough Petes (2010-13) and Windsor Spitfires (2013-2014) of the Ontario Hockey League. He notched 123 points (33G, 90A) in 195 OHL games. He was named to the OHL First All-Star Team after the 2013-14 season with Windsor where he had 53 points (15G, 38A) in 62 games.
Rutta spent time with the Blackhawks and Rockford IceHogs of the AHL this season. In two seasons with Chicago, Rutta recorded eight goals and 18 assists.