LAS VEGAS (AP) — The Utah Hockey Club stole the show on the second day of the NHL draft by making two big trades in a matter of minutes, fast-tracking a rebuild for the team looking to make a splash in its new city.

Utah acquired two-time Stanley Cup champion Mikhail Sergachev from Tampa Bay in a blockbuster and got fellow defenseman John Marino from New Jersey in separate trades completed Saturday.

A buzz rippled through the crowd at Sphere when NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly announced the Sergachev trade early in the second round. Utah sent defenseman J.J. Moser, forward prospect Conor Geekie, a 2025 second-rounder and the 199th pick in this year’s draft.

Daly was back at the microphone not long after to inform fans and the rest of hockey that Utah was not done, getting Marino and the 153rd pick from the Devils for No. 49 and Edmonton’s second-rounder in 2025.

Owner Ryan Smith and general manager Bill Armstrong cautioned that the team would not spend wastefully in free agency, but these moves with potentially more coming when free agency opens Monday could make Utah a contender sooner than later.

The club entered the draft with 13 picks, and Armstrong indicated he was open to using them as trade assets. He spent the first two on the organization’s future, selecting Tij Iginla — son of Hall of Famer Jarome Iginla — with the sixth pick and traded up to get Cole Beaudoin at No. 24.

Trading Sergachev and his $8.5 million annual salary through 2031 could clear space for Tampa Bay to keep longtime captain and face of the franchise Steven Stamkos, a pending free agent. The Lightning also sent forward Tanner Jeannot to the Kings in a separate move, which frees up money for defenseman Victor Hedman’s pending contract extension to keep him with the organization for the foreseeable future.


AP Hockey Writer Stephen Whyno contributed to this report.



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