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Saturday, June 19, 2010

Devils Acquire Center Jason Arnott from Predators

The New Jersey Devils announced today that they have acquired center Jason Arnott from the Nashville Predators in exchange for prospect right wing Matt Halischuk and a second round pick in the 2011 Entry Draft. This will be Arnott's second stint with the Devils, where he previously played from 1997 to 2002. In 63 games last season with the Predators, Arnott had 19 goals and 27 assists for 46 points. In 1099 career NHL games with the Edmonton Oilers, New Jersey Devils, Dallas Stars, and Nashville Predators, he has 383 goals and 490 assists for 873 points. Halischuk played in 20 games last season with the Devils, scoring one goal and one assist. He also appeared in 32 games with Lowell of the AHL, scoring 11 goals and 11 assists for 22 points. Not a bad trade for the Devils, as Arnott still brings plenty of offensive skill, toughness, and leadership to the team despite being limited by injuries in recent seasons. Again, the Predators are essentially making a cost-cutting trade to help save money, although it was unlikely Arnott would have remained in Nashville beyond next season. By trading Arnott and his $4.5 million salary, it gives the team some salary cap space to re-sign Dustin Boyd, Patric Hornqvist, Denis Grebeshkov, Cody Franson, and Ryan Parent. Halischuk brings some two-way skill and offensive upside to the team, so it's possible he could be in the lineup next season. Plus, at $875,000, he's a very affordable winger. Given the departures of star players in Dan Hamhuis and Jason Arnott both on the same day, one can't help but wonder if the Predators will attempt to retain defensemen Shea Weber and Ryan Suter when their contracts expire in 2011 and 2012, respectively.

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