The Anaheim Ducks have made a move to inject some life into an offense decimated by injuries.
On Thursday, the team announced it would send defenseman Sami Vatanen and a conditional pick to the New Jersey Devils in exchange for centers Adam Henrique and Joseph Blandisi, as well as a 2018 third-round pick.
Henrique joins the Ducks as the key acquisition in the trade. Drafted by the Devils in the 82nd overall in the 2008 draft, Henrique was a runner-up for the Calder Trophy as the NHL’s best rookie in 2011-2012 season and finished 2015-2016 with a career-high 50 points (20 G, 30 A). He joins a Ducks team that has been without top centers Ryan Getzlaf and Ryan Kesler a majority of this season.
“It’s a winning organization,” Henrique told reporters on the trade. “When everyone returns from the injuries, it’s going to be a scary team making a push this year.”
Vatanen leaves the Ducks having signed a four-year contract extension with the Ducks in 2016. The right-handed shot from Finland had become expendable with the rise of Brandon Montour as an offensive defenseman this season and young talent Jaycob Megna also seeing time this season.
“It’s a good deal for both teams. We both have needs to fill. Hopefully, this works out for both teams,” said Ducks GM Bob Murray of the deal. “This helps us right now. We’ve looked for left-handed shooting centers/wings for a long time now.”