San Jose Sharks send Nikita Okhotiuk to the Calgary Flame for a fifth-round draft pick

Feb 17, 2024; San Jose, California, USA; San Jose Sharks defenseman Nikita Okhotiuk (83) skates with
Feb 17, 2024; San Jose, California, USA; San Jose Sharks defenseman Nikita Okhotiuk (83) skates with / Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

Nikita Okhotiuk is the final Shark to move on deadline day. He will be taking his trade north of the border and heading to the Calgary Flames organization as the San Jose Sharks acquire a fifth round pick in 2024 for the defenseman. San Jose acquired Okhotiuk in the Timo Meier deal before the deadline last year, and extend that trade tree by sending the Russian to Calgary where the 23-year-old will be filling in the gaps on the blueline.

San Jose needed an answer to the log jam they currently have on the blueline. With guys like Shakir Mukhamadullin in the AHL, there was always going to be someone that had to move, and with how often Okhotiuk was sitting at his age, it made more sense to move him. He's still young and developing. He's going to get more from playing consistently in Calgary than he will from sitting in the press box in San Jose.

Is a fifth fair value for Okhotiuk? It's probably a little light. We know that he's still very young and likely to get better as he gets older. A fifth could turn out to be a little light, but it solves the issue the Sharks have on the blueline at this moment with too many defensemen. This leaves the Sharks with enough to not lock a young player upstairs for prolonged periods, requiring an injury to get into the lineup.

It's been a hectic trade deadline day for the Sharks, but this is a deal that makes sense. Someone had to go, and while I think everyone would have rather seen it be someone like a Jan Rutta to allow the younger players to come through as a group, Okhotiuk doesn't have the upside of someone like a Henry Thrun, and they got another pick in the upcoming draft for him. Now, the season turns to getting the best from the youngsters.