NHL Trade: Sharks send Nieto and Merkley to the Avs for Kaut and MacDonald

The San Jose Sharks traded forward Matt Nieto and defenseman Ryan Merkley to the Colorado Avalanche for forward Martin Kaut and defenseman Jacob MacDonald.

Ryan Boulding: San Jose Sharks GM Mike Grier on the Kaut: “Martin is a former first-round pick who bolsters our group of young developing forwards at the American Hockey League level.”

Ryan Boulding: Grieer on MacDonald: “Jacob is a versatile veteran player who has been an All-Star at the American Hockey League level and will add depth to our NHL line-up.”

Thoughts from the media

Puck Pedia: “The #GoAvsGo acquired 22 y/o RD Merkley (863K Cap Hit then RFA) & 30 y/o F Nieto (Yr 2/2 850K then UFA) from #SJSharks for 23 y/o RW Kaut (863K then RFA) & 29 y/o LD MacDonald (Yr 1/2 763K).

Nieto & MacDonald were in NHL, so COL added net $87.5K cap hit”

Corey Masisak: “Jacob MacDonald was toiling in the ECHL when NJ gave him a chance in the AHL in 2016-17. He instantly became a great offensive D-man at that level. He’s got 74 GP for the Avs over the past 3 years. Could be a 6/7/8 for SJS or be what Merkley was supposed to be for the Barracuda.”

Kyle Ferguson: “Nieto returns to Colorado where he played for three-plus seasons (2017-20)”

Meghan Angley: “Merkley is a young defenseman who wanted change of scenery and a change of scenery might be exactly what Kaut needed. He will have more opportunity in San Jose. Nieto fits Avs system so well, great depth addition with Helm’s status TBD. I am thrilled for all involved.”