Erik Karlsson trade details: Penguins acquire three-time Norris Trophy winner from Sharks

The 2023 Norris Trophy winner is on the move. 

The Sharks have traded defenseman Erik Karlsson to the Pittsburgh Penguins in a three-team trade with the Montreal Canadiens, the team announced Sunday.

The Penguins are also acquiring forward Rem Pitlick, forward Dillon Hamaliuk, and the Sharks’ 2026 third-round pick. The Sharks will get a top-10 protected 2024 first-round pick from the Penguins, forward Mikael Granlund, defenseman Jan Rutta, and forward Mike Hoffman. The Canadiens, meanwhile, get the Penguins’ 2025 second-round pick, defenseman Jeff Petry, goalie Casey DeSmith, and forward Nathan Legare.

Karlsson enjoyed a career resurgence during the 2022-23 season. After failing to hit 50 points for the previous four seasons, the Swede led all defensemen in points with 101, one of just 11 players to hit triple digits during the season.

His points, goals (25) and assists (76) were all career-highs for the 33-year-old. Only Connor McDavid and David Pastrnak had more even-strength points during the year. Karlsson played in all 82 games, marking the first time since 2015-16 that he stayed healthy for the entire season and didn’t miss any games. 

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Erik Karlsson trade details

  • Penguins receive: D Erik Karlsson, F Dillon Hamaliuk, Sharks 2026 third-round pick
  • Sharks receive: Sharks’ top-10 protected 2024 first, F Mikael Granlund, D Jan Rutta, F Mike Hoffman
  • Canadiens receive: Penguins’ 2025 second, D Jeff Petry, G Casey DeSmith, F Nathan Legare

Karlsson is what he always has been — an all-offensive dynamo on the back end that when paired with a pure shutdown defender, can make for one of the best defensemen in the league. He has the ability to produce like a forward, quarterback a power play, and control the puck in the offensive zone.

The Sharks will retain $1.5 million of Karlsson’s salary this year, whereas the Penguins will take on 25 percent of Petry’s, per Elliotte Friedman. For the Penguins, this trade was largely about shedding weight, whereas the Sharks were trying to get out from under Karlsson’s contract. The headliner for San Jose is the 2024 first.

Erik Karlsson contract details 

Karlsson is entering the fifth season of his eight-year, $92 million contract he signed with San Jose in 2019. He is signed for four more seasons with a cap hit of $11.5 million. 

The defenseman has a modified no-movement clause on all of the remaining years. He’ll be an unrestricted free agent in 2027. 

Year AAV
2023-24 $11,500,000
2024-25 $11,500,000
2025-26 $11,500,000
2026-27 $11,500,000

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