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De Haan traded to Blackhawks by Hurricanes

Chicago also receives forward prospect Saarela for defenseman Forsling, goalie Forsberg

by NHL.com @NHLdotcom

Calvin de Haan was traded to the Chicago Blackhawks by the Carolina Hurricanes on Monday along with forward prospect Aleksi Saarela for goalie Anton Forsberg and defenseman Gustav Forsling.

De Haan had a goal and 13 assists in 74 regular-season games this season and one goal in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, helping the Hurricanes reach the Eastern Conference Final. The 28-year-old defenseman signed a four-year contract with Carolina on July 1, 2018, as an unrestricted free agent after playing six seasons with the New York Islanders, who selected him with the No. 12 pick at the 2009 NHL Draft.

"The overall feeling I have for the trade is, it's still kind of a shock to be honest. I didn't think it was going to be me after Carolina signed me last summer," de Haan said Tuesday. "My fiancee and I thought we'd have roots there. But I get it. It's a business. Looking back on it now, it's only been 12 hours or 16 hours or whatever, but it's been a whirlwind. I'm really looking forward to it now. (General manager) Stan [Bowman] and the Blackhawks made a deal for me, I feel like I'm wanted and I'm looking forward to my opportunity with this organization."

In seven NHL seasons with the Hurricanes and Islanders, de Haan has 95 points (13 goals, 82 assists) in 378 games.

He had surgery on his right shoulder in May and could miss the start of next season.

"I'm about five weeks into rehab, I think it's five weeks today since I was under the knife. Things are progressing well," de Haan said. "I'd like to think I'm ahead of schedule. I've had surgeries in the past, so I know how this goes. I'm going to make sure I'm ready for camp, and then it'll be up to the doctors and such whether they want me to play or want me to take a few weeks and progress slowly. My main goal is to be ready for camp. I don't want to sit on the sidelines. I want to be on the ice, grinding away and trying to help this team get back into the playoffs."

 

[RELATED: 2019-20 NHL Trade Tracker]

 

Saarela helped Charlotte of the American Hockey League win the Calder Cup this season, setting AHL career highs in goals (30), assists (24) and points (54) in 69 regular-season games. The 22-year-old had 15 points (seven goals, eight assists) in 17 AHL playoff games and played one postseason game with the Hurricanes.

"It's my goal to play in the NHL every game," Saarela said. "It was a cool experience to play one playoff game [against the Washington Capitals on April 20], and yeah, I'm going to work my [butt] off during the summer and get closer to making my dream come true."

Saarela was selected by the New York Rangers in the third round (No. 89) of the 2015 NHL Draft. In 147 AHL games with Charlotte, he had 107 points (61 goals, 46 assists). The Blackhawks selected his brother, forward Antti Saarela, in the fourth round (No. 123) of the 2019 NHL Draft.

Forsberg went 15-15-2 with a 2.64 goals-against average and a .919 save percentage in 32 games with Rockford of the AHL this season. The 26-year-old is 11-24-4 with a 3.21 GAA and .901 save percentage in 45 NHL games with the Blackhawks and Columbus Blue Jackets. Forsberg was a seventh-round pick by Columbus (No. 188) in the 2011 NHL Draft.

"Forsberg's a guy we all like," Hurricanes general manager Don Waddell said. "Our [goalie development coach Paul Schonfelder] really likes him. So to add another young goalie -- I know he's maybe older by age, but as a goaltender he's still very young. To add him to the mix, we can create great competition for the position, which isn't a bad thing. We'll also be covered if we run into injuries as the season progresses."

Forsling had 27 points (eight goals, 19 assists) in 122 NHL games over three seasons with the Blackhawks. The 23-year-old was a fifth-round pick (No. 126) by the Vancouver Canucks at the 2014 NHL Draft.

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