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Tuesday, March 11
Avs acquire Battaglia; Kings trade Smolinski

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Carolina sends Battaglia to Avalanche
The Carolina Hurricanes, out of the playoffs one season after winning the Eastern Conference title, unloaded another team veteran, trading left wing Bates Battaglia to Colorado for right wing Radim Vrbata.

Battaglia has only 19 points (5 goals, 14 assists) in 70 games this season with the Hurricanes, who traded defenseman Glen Wesley to Toronto over the weekend for a 2004 draft pick.

In 82 regular-season games last year, Battaglia had 46 points (21 goals, 25 assists), and in the playoffs had another 14 points (5 goals, 9 assists) in 23 games.

"If I could narrow it down to one thing that I could have changed, maybe things would have been different. But I couldn't,'' Battaglia said. "I've just been trying to come and work hard every day, but things just haven't turned around for me.

"I'm excited. The time I spent here has been awesome and I can't say a bad thing about the city or the organization. But this is a good opportunity for me,'' he said. "Sometimes a change of scenery can spark things for people. I hope it does for me.''

The 21-year-old Vrbata, in his second NHL season, has 30 points (11 goals, 19 assists) in 66 games for Colorado this year. In his first season, he had 30 points (18 goals, 12 assists) in 52 games.

"This is a trade that involves two very different types of players,'' Carolina general manager Jim Rutherford said. "Radim is a young, highly-skilled winger.''

Tues., March 11
Bryan Smolinski is a nice pickup for the Senators because he has been hot of late, soring nine goals and 15 points since the beginning of February, and he has playoff experience. Vaclav Varada will also be helpful because he gives the Sens a physical presence in the offensive zone and is very competitive.

Rob Ray doesn't do much for Ottawa, except provide a physical presence. They had the best team in the East to begin with and probably didn't need to do as much as the rest of the conference.

Kings send center Smolinski to Senators
The Ottawa Senators acquired veteran center Bryan Smolinski from the Los Angeles Kings shortly before Tuesday's trade deadline for the rights to prospect Tim Gleason.

Smolinski, eligible to become an unrestricted free agent July 1, was the Kings' third-leading scorer this season, with 18 goals and 20 assists for 38 points.

He had 78 goals and 113 assists with the Kings after being acquired from the New York Islanders in June 1999.

The Senators selected the 20-year-old Gleason in the first round of the 2001 NHL entry draft. He has seven goals and 29 assists in 42 games for the Windsor Spitfires of the Ontario Hockey League this season.

The Kings have until June 1 to sign Gleason, who will be eligible to re-enter the NHL draft if unsigned by that time.

Avs send McAmmond back to Flames
Colorado traded Dean McAmmond back to Calgary for a draft pick on Tuesday, just five months after the Avalanche acquired the forward from the Flames in a five-player deal.

Colorado will receive a fifth-round draft choice from Calgary this year or in 2004.

The Avalanche obtained McAmmond, forward Jeff Shantz and defenseman Derek Morris on Oct. 1 for forwards Chris Drury and Stephane Yelle.

McAmmond missed the first 23 games this season with a back injury and never really got into a rhythm with his new team. He had 10 goals and eight assists in 41 games, but was a healthy scratch in five of the past 15 games.

Colorado general manager Pierre Lacroix said the acquisition of forward Bates Battaglia from Carolina earlier in the day made McAmmond expendable.

"Being a good team guy and a good person, we felt that going back with his family was the right thing at this stage now that we have the gritty player in Battaglia,'' Lacroix said.

Bruins boost defense, obtain McGillis from Sharks
The Boston Bruins shored up one of the NHL's worst defenses Tuesday by obtaining defensemen Dan McGillis from San Jose and Ian Moran from Pittsburgh for draft picks.

Boston sent a third-round choice in 2003 to San Jose and a fourth-round choice in 2004 to Pittsburgh for the 30-year-old defensemen, who both played at colleges in Boston.

This season, McGillis has three goals, 16 assists and 50 penalty minutes in 61 games with Philadelphia and San Jose. Moran had seven assists and 46 penalty minutes in 70 games.

The Bruins, struggling to hang on to a playoff spot, have allowed an average of 2.9 goals a game, the highest among the eight teams in the East and eight in the West who currently would qualify for the playoffs.

Bruins general manager Mike O'Connell praised both players, who are expected to be ready for Thursday night's home game against New Jersey.

The Bruins had one of their worst defensive games of the season last Sunday in an 8-5 loss at Chicago, leaving them seventh in the East. Boston had 42 points in its first 27 games but just 31 in the next 42.

Rob Niedermayer traded to Mighty Ducks
The Anaheim Mighty Ducks acquired Rob Niedermayer.

The Mighty Ducks got Niedermayer from Calgary for young defenseman Mike Commodore and prospect goalie J.F. Damphousse.

Niedermayer, 28, had only eight goals and 10 assists in 54 games with the Flames. He is signed through next season.

Coyotes send physical forward May to Canucks
The Vancouver Canucks didn't get shut out at the trade deadline Tuesday, acquiring hard-nosed forward Brad May from the Phoenix Coyotes for future considerations.

May, 31, had three goals, four assists and 32 penalty minutes in 20 games this season. He's earning $1.2 million this season and can become an unrestricted free agent July 1.

May returns to Vancouver, where he played from 1997 to 2000.

Phoenix receives a third round pick that could become a second round pick if the Canucks either advance far enough in the playoffs or re-sign May.

"It adds a component of grit and character,'' said Brian Burke, Vancouver s president and general manager. "It's obviously a player we had before and are very comfortable with.''

Minnesota receives G Holmqvist from Rangers
Minnesota did make one deal, acquiring goaltender Johan Holmqvist from the New York Rangers organization in exchange for minor-league defenseman Lawrence Nycholat.

Holmqvist has spent the majority of the season with Hartford of the AHL and will be assigned to the Wild's affiliate in Houston.

Predators acquire Riazantsev for draft pick
The Nashville Predators acquired defenseman Alexander Riazantsev from the Colorado Avalanche on Tuesday for a seventh-round draft pick.

Riazantsev, 22, had five goals and 10 assists in 57 games with the Hershey Bears of the AHL, Colorado's primary minor-league affiliate. Riazantsev will join the Milwaukee Admirals of the AHL.

Earlier in the day, the Predators acquired forward Todd Warriner off waivers from Philadelphia.

The nine-year veteran had six goals and nine assists in 43 games this season with Vancouver and Philadelphia.

Panthers pick up Kravchuk
The Panthers signed veteran free-agent defenseman Igor Kravchuk.

Kravchuk, 36, has not played this season after collecting four goals and 22 assists in 78 games with the Calgary Flames in 2001-02. The 11-year NHL veteran also represented Russia at the Salt Lake City Olympics.

Thrashers get Aquino from Stars
The Atlanta Thrashers acquired right wing Anthony Aquino from the Dallas Stars on Tuesday for a sixth-round draft pick.

The Thrashers then signed Aquino and sent him to Chicago of the AHL. Aquino, 20, was chosen in the third round of the 2001 draft.

He scored 10 goals and had nine assists in 14 games with Oshawa of the Ontario Hockey League.

Vets Marshall, Smehlik head to Devils
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- The New Jersey Devils, locked in a battle atop the Eastern Conference and with an eye on home-ice advantage throughout the playoffs, acquired a pair of veterans in separate trades Monday.

New Jersey dealt a conditional 2004 draft pick to the Columbus Blue Jackets for right wing Grant Marshall and a fourth-round pick in 2003 to the Atlanta Thrashers for defenseman Richard Smehlik and a conditional pick in 2004.

Marshall, 29, has eight goals and 28 points in 66 games with the Blue Jackets this season. A member of the Dallas Stars' Stanley Cup championship team in 1999, Marshall was the Toronto Maple Leafs' first-round selection in 1992.

In 549 career games, Marshall has 75 goals, 195 points and 649 penalty minutes.

Smehlik, 33 , has two goals and 11 points in 43 games for the Thrashers. He battled groin and chest injuries earlier this season, missing 22 games.

In 632 career games, Smehlik has 49 goals, 193 points and 415 penalty minutes. He spent his first nine seasons with the Buffalo Sabres before signing with the Thrashers as a free agent in June.

New Jersey leads Philadelphia by five points in the division and trails Ottawa by five points in the race for the Presidents' Trophy. The Devils have two games in hand on the Senators.

Predators acquire goaltender Flaherty from Panthers
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Seeking its first playoff berth in franchise history, the Nashville Predators acquired some protection for goaltender Tomas Vokoun on Sunday, acquiring Wade Flaherty from the Florida Panthers.

The Predators sent defenseman Pascal Trepanier to the Panthers for Flaherty, who has spent the majority of the season at San Antonio of the American Hockey League. Flaherty has a 11-13-5 record with a 2.88 goals-against average and .914 save percentage.

In a sporadic 12-year NHL career, Flaherty is 27-55-9 with a 3.50 GAA in 119 games with Florida, Tampa Bay, the New York Islanders and San Jose.

Flaherty is expected to join the Predators on Monday for their home game against Montreal. He will back up Vokoun, who has started all but once since Mike Dunham was traded to the New York Rangers in December.

Rookie Jan Lasak has been backing up Vokoun, but he has played in only three games this season.

Trepanier appeared in one game for Nashville before being assigned to Milwaukee of the AHL on October 23. In 52 games with the Admirals, he had nine goals and 15 assists.

The Predators also traded forward Bob Wren to Ottawa for future considerations.

Wren, 28, had one goal and six assists with Milwaukee of the AHL. Nashville acquired him from Toronto on Dec. 31 for forward Nathan Perrott.

The Predators entered Sunday five points behind Edmonton for the eighth and final playoff berth in the Western Conference. They have never made the postseason since joining the league in 1998-99.

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