The Flyers and the Columbus Blue Jackets have agreed to a one-for-one swap of longtime forward Jakub Voracek for 32-year-old forward Cam Atkinson.
It’s a homecoming for Voracek, who was originally drafted by Columbus 7th overall in the 2007 NHL draft. The Flyers acquired him in a deal for Jeff Carter in 2011.
🚨 TRADE ALERT! 🚨
We have acquired forward Cam Atkinson from Columbus in exchange for forward Jakub Voracek.
— Philadelphia Flyers (@NHLFlyers) July 24, 2021
The Flyers have been exploring options in the offseason to unload Voracek. Philadelphia Flyers President Chuck Fletcher confirmed on a recent episode of Snow the Goalie that he told the talented offensive forward he could be moved.
The Flyers did not protect Voracek in the recent NHL expansion draft, but he was not selected by the Seattle Kraken.
Here’s what Crossing Broad’s Anthony SanFilippo said about the deal:
The Flyers were hoping Seattle would help facilitate a trade of Jake Voracek during the expansion draft. The Flyers were interested in Vladimir Tarasenko.
But the Kraken wouldn’t… crack. (Sorry.)
So, Flyers GM Chuck Fletcher went to the next item on his flow chart – Cam Atkinson.
Atkinson, 31, has had a couple of down years scoring since potting 41 goals for the Columbus Blue Jacket in 2018-19, but the Flyers are willing to gamble that his downturn in production was at least partially impacted by the pandemic – and the fact that the Blue Jackets were pretty terrible last season.
I had also heard that after the deal with Seattle fell through that Voracek’s camp officially, albeit quietly, requested a trade from the Flyers. I plan to get that confirmed or denied by Chuck Fletcher at his press conference today.
With that said, keeping that under wraps likely facilitated this swap being of good value, and maybe even expedited it a bit.
It should be noted that Atkinson had a modified no-trade clause, so he either had the Flyers listed as one of the teams he would waive the NTC for, or had to be asked permission to be sent to the Flyers and agreed to it.
There is no salary retention in the deal either, which is a boon for the Flyers. Voracek’s cap hit was $8.25 million. He had three years remaining ($24.75 million total).
Atkinson’s cap hit is just $5.875 million, so it saves the Flyers nearly $2.5 million under the cap, however he has four years remaining on his deal, meaning he is owed $23.5 million, making the deal almost a wash in real dollars.
We’ll have more on this trade and the Flyers draft selections later today.
Atkinson tallied 15 goals and 19 assists in 56 games for Columbus in the 2020-2021 season. Voracek notched 9 goals and 34 assists in 53 games in the season.
In 10 years with the Flyers, Voracek scored 177 goals and notched 427 assists for 604 total points in 727 total games.
Atkinson has spent his entire 10-year career with Columbus, totaling 213 goals and 189 assists for 402 points.