The Seattle Kraken have brought back a familiar face. Defenseman Connor Carrick is returning for his second stint with the organization, signing a one-year, two-way deal with a $775K average annual value.
Carrick, 29, joined the Kraken a couple of months before the team played their first game, signing a one-year pact with them in free agency in August 2021. He didn’t appear in an NHL game for them, though, instead spending the entire season with the AHL’s Charlotte Checkers, Seattle’s affiliate for their inaugural season.
This is Carrick’s third straight one-year, two-way deal as he continues his career as a high-end AHL depth piece with some significant NHL experience. He spent last season with the Boston Bruins, leading their AHL affiliate in Providence in points from defensemen with 44 in 63 games. He made one NHL appearance with the Bruins in 2022-23, registering an assist, a +3 rating, two shots on goal, and playing 16:54 in an April 9 game against the Philadelphia Flyers.
Carrick, a right-shot defender, also did well in Charlotte, recording 10 goals and 32 points in 59 games. The past two seasons were Carrick’s first full-time AHL campaigns since 2015-16 with the Hershey Bears and Toronto Marlies, as he’d mainly stuck in the NHL as a seventh defenseman since then.
In his eight-season, 242-game NHL career, Carrick’s played for the Bruins, Dallas Stars, New Jersey Devils, Toronto Maple Leafs, and Washington Capitals. He’s amassed 13 goals, 37 assists, 50 points, and a -19 rating.
Seattle’s NHL defense corps is filled up after signing former Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Brian Dumoulin to a two-year contract on July 1. Because of that, Carrick is likely destined for another significant AHL role, this time with the Coachella Valley Firebirds. Seattle’s minor-league affiliate advanced to Game 7 of the Calder Cup Final in their inaugural campaign last year, losing to Hershey in overtime. Within the Kraken organization, he replaces the role of defenseman Brogan Rafferty, who led Firebirds defensemen in regular-season scoring with 51 points in 72 games and signed with the Detroit Red Wings on Saturday.