Keeper moves on trade deadline: Wild gets Marc-Andre Fleury, trades Kaapo Kahkonen

The Wild will look different for the rest of the season, with the team acquiring future Hall of Famer and reigning Vezina Trophy winner Marc-Andre Fleury from the Blackhawks on Monday before the NHL trade deadline expired.

This deal cost the Wild a conditional roster from the first round of 2022, which will change to a runoff election if the Wild doesn’t reach the Western Conference finals and Fleury isn’t in the net for four wins or more in the first two rounds .

The Blackhawks also kept half of Fleury’s salary. He will be an unrestricted free agent after the season and waived his no-trade clause to facilitate the deal.

Fleury is expected to back up to the Wild Monday night when the team takes on the Golden Knights at Xcel Energy Center. Cam Talbot is slated to start.

In a separate transaction, the team shipped goalkeeper Kaapo Kahkonen and a 2022 fifth-round pick (originally from San Jose) to the Sharks for left-shot defender Jacob Middleton.

Fleury, 37, is 19-21-5 with an average of 2.95 goals conceded and a save rate of 0.908 this season with Chicago, who took him over from Vegas in the off-season. Before that, Fleury, the No. 1 overall pick in 2003, won three Stanley Cups with Pittsburgh, a tenure that overlapped with Wild General Manager Bill Guerin when he was a player with the Penguins and then moved to their front office.

Kahkonen went 12-8 with the Wild this season with an average of 2.87 goals conceded and a save rate of 0.910. In general, he leaves the organization after 31-17-4 with an average of 2.89 goals conceded and a save rate of 0.907. The 25-year-old is technically a rookie, although he was the backup last season, playing 24 games.

Talbot will be under contract next season before his three-year contract expires. De Wild fielded keeper Jesper Wallstedt in the first round (20th overall) in 2021, and the 19-year-old plays for Lulea HF, the second team in Sweden’s top league with 14 teams this season.

Middleton, 26, has three goals and six assists in 45 appearances for the Sharks and averages 19:03 time on ice. He was the final pick, 210th overall, of the 2014 NHL Draft, by the Los Angeles Kings.

Earlier Monday, the Wild sent the rights of Jack McBain, a former third-round voter who played four seasons at Boston College, to the Arizona Coyotes for a second round in 2022. McBain told the Wild he would not sign, and a free broker in mid-August.

Fleury will take the No. 29 jersey from defender Dmitry Kulikov and Kulikov will switch to No. 7. Middleton will wear No. 5.

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