Columbus Blue Jackets Acquire Damon Severson from New Jersey Devils in Trade and Sign 8-Year Contract

One of the greatest pending unrestricted free agents came off the board early.

Sources have confirmed Frank Seravalli of Daily Faceoff that the Columbus Blue Jackets acquired defenseman Damon Severson from the New Jersey Devils. The Devils will receive a 2023 third-round pick as part of the deal, currently slated to be the 80th overall pick.

The Blue Jackets are expected to announce an eight-year contract for Severson.

Severson was the top free agent on the last Seravalli Top 50 board, with a six-year salary projection of $6.1 million according to AFP Analytics. Severson just signed a six-year contract with the Devils with an AAV of $4.166 million.

The 28-year-old from Brandon, Manitoba has proven to be a valuable NHL defenseman, scoring a career-high 11 goals and 46 points in 2021-22. He had scored seven goals and had 33 points in the regular season and three more points in the playoffs this year with the Devils, the team that drafted him 60th overall in 2012.

The move is another in a busy offseason for the Blue Jackets, who acquired Ivan Provorov from the Philadelphia Flyers earlier in the week. They are also expected to appoint Mike Babcock as coach ahead of a summer that has seen the Blue Jackets look to make a big move next year. The club signed Johnny Gaudreau last summer but finished near the bottom of the standings. Injuries played a big part in that, but the team hopes their decisions this summer can get them closer to the playoffs.

Columbus could start the season with a top-four finish involving Provorov, Severson, Zach Werenski and top prospect David Jiricek. The team also has Denton Mateychuk, Corson Ceulemans and Stanislav Svozil in the ranks, as well as current NHL players Adam Boqvist, Andrew Beeke and Erik Gudbranson.