The 27-year-old spent the last two seasons in Seattle, putting up decent secondary scoring numbers along the way. After picking up 16 goals and 15 assists in his first season with the Kraken, Donato followed that up with a 14-goal, 13-assist performance in 71 games despite seeing his playing time drop by more than 2:30 per game to just 11:15 a night.
While playing time was hard to come by on a deep Seattle squad, that shouldn’t necessarily be the case this time around on a Chicago team that has been busy adding this week after parting with many of their regular forwards in recent months.
Over the past few days, Taylor Hall was added to give top pick Connor Bedard a capable running mate on the top line while Andreas Athanasiou was recently re-signed. Meanwhile, veterans Nick Foligno and Corey Perry were brought in on one-year, $4MM deals but those two figure to play on the fourth line, meaning there should be an opportunity for Donato to grab a hold of a regular spot in Chicago’s middle six. If he’s able to do so, he could be in line for a career year which would also result in the Blackhawks getting a pretty good bang for their buck on this signing.