Chiarot to the Panthers, Vatrano to the Rangers, Jarnkrok to the Flames

by | Mar 16, 2022 | News, NHL, Rumors | 13 comments

The Montreal Canadiens trade defenseman Ben Chiarot to the Florida Panthers in exchange for prospect forward Ty Smilanic, a conditional first-round pick in 2023 or 2024 and a conditional fourth-round pick in 2022. The Canadiens also retain 50 percent of Chiarot’s $3.5 million cap hit.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Chiarot, 30, was one of the notable names floating around the rumor mill for months because of his unrestricted free agent status this summer and the Canadiens’ low placement in the standings. He was among the defensemen on the Panthers’ rumored list of trade targets back in January. Chiarot should provide experienced depth on the left side of their blueline in a second-pairing role behind MacKenzie Weegar.

Montreal Canadiens trade defenseman Ben Chiarot to the Florida Panthers (NHL Images).

The Panthers gave up a fair bit for a rental player but that was likely the price to be paid to entice the Canadiens to retain half of Chiarot’s cap hit. Cap Friendly indicates the Panthers have $3.7 million in projected trade deadline cap space, leaving a bit of wiggle room for another move if necessary. Speculation suggests Panthers general manager Bill Zito might not be done dealing.

Canadiens general manager set a high price for Chiarot with a first-rounder and he got it plus more. Smilanic is in his second season with Quinnipiac University in the NCAA. Elite Prospects calls the 20-year-old center “a complete talent who can be relied on in all situations.” Overall, not a bad haul for the rebuilding Canadiens.

Before acquiring Chiarot, the Panthers traded forward Frank Vatrano to the New York Rangers in exchange for the later selection of either the Rangers’ own fourth-rounder in the 2022 draft or the fourth-rounder the Rangers acquired from the Winnipeg Jets.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Shipping out Vatrano was a cost-cutting move for the Panthers to clear sufficient space for Chiarot. Slated to become an unrestricted free agent this summer, he carries a $2.53 million cap hit for this season. He’d seen fourth-line duty and was a healthy scratch at times this season.

Vatrano is expected to help boost the Rangers’ bottom-six forward lines. This move doesn’t put a big dent in the Rangers’ projected trade deadline cap space ($31 million) and didn’t cost them any of their promising young players. GM Chris Drury has plenty of cap room and trade assets to make a more substantial move before Monday’s trade deadline.

The Calgary Flames acquire forward Calle Jarnkrok from the Seattle Kraken in exchange for a second-round pick in the 2022 draft, a third-rounder in 2023 and a seventh-rounder in 2024. The Kraken also retained 50 percent of Jarnkrok’s $2 million cap hit.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: After making a big splash last month by acquiring Tyler Toffoli, the Flames make a depth addition to their checking lines with the 30-year-old Jarnkrok. He’s a versatile two-way forward who can play all three forward positions. Like Chiarot and Vatrano, Jarnkrok is slated to become a UFA this summer.

It’s a decent return for the first-year Kraken. GM Ron Francis is aiming at loading up on picks to stock up his prospect pipeline.


  1. Huge overpayment for Chairot, but likely what it would take.

    • A lot of posters said there was no way Montreal would get a 1st round pick for Chairot – never underestimate what GM’s will pay in their quest to bring Lord Stanley home.

      • Chiarot just went the finals+adds that size to Florida. Cant hate the overpayment with the decent prospect+a 1st.

      • Habfan I was one that did not think he would get a first thought a second and mid prospect . Great trade hope the Habs can resign him in the off season .

  2. Good hauls for both Habs and kraken. Will be interested to see what chic. In AZ costs when it is said and done

    • Why do they want to trade him in the first place???

    • Wo is chic

      • CHYCHRUN

  3. Nice part of the trade is Chiarot’s openness to signing with the Habs in the summer.
    In his interview with Eric Engels

    EE: If they come calling in the summer, will you pick up the phone?

    BC: Absolutely! I’ve loved my time in Montreal. Nothing but good things to say about the team and the city. It’s been everything I thought it would be. With all the highs and lows that come with being in a market like this, it fits my personality and I love it. I’d come back here in a heartbeat.

  4. Way over payment Ben has never scored 10 never had 25 assists and never even had 75 penalty minutes so he’s not mean. Florida has a chance but they had a chance without Ben also crazy to me to pay that much.

  5. Great Deal by Montreal and extreme over payment by Florida.

    The player is worth what someone is willing to pay contracts to Montreal for finding that guy.

    Florida potential first round opponents

    Wash, Bos, Tor or TB there is no guarantee they get by the first round.

  6. The naysayers here just don’t get it and might not ever.

    A trade isn’t judged on one for one value but on how it impacts the whole of a team.

    Chiarot brings a certain value to a team that isn’t easily found. Somebody yesterday claimed Justin Holl had more value lol.
    Try trading him for a 1st,4th and a prospect.

    This trade instantly improves Florida and they have a deep prospect pool that can afford giving up the assets.

  7. Slight overpay for Järnkrok and great overpay for Chiarot, BUT it does allow them to know they get what they want. Price might be lower on monday but then again the player might be gone