Fedorov, pick to Jackets for Wright, Beauchemin
COLUMBUS, Ohio -- The Columbus Blue Jackets acquired six-time All-Star center Sergei Fedorov and a fifth-round pick in 2006 on Tuesday from the Anaheim Mighty Ducks for forward Tyler Wright and rookie defenseman Francois Beauchemin.
The 35-year-old Fedorov had one assist in five games this season for Anaheim, his second with the Mighty Ducks after 13 seasons with Detroit. He recently returned from a groin injury that sidelined him for 13 games.
Columbus general manager and president Doug MacLean had been sorting through trades for the past few weeks, but said he was unwilling to part with any of the Blue Jackets' young talent.
Columbus is last in the NHL with 34 goals.
MacLean likened the acquisition of Fedorov to the free-agent signing this summer of defenseman Adam Foote, a mainstay of Colorado's Stanley Cup teams.
"The point of the deal is similar to our signing of Adam Foote," MacLean said. "We have a lot of young players, a lot of young kids with a lot of talent. We're adding a three-time Stanley Cup champion, a Hart winner, who still has a tremendous skill level and is excited to play. He'll be a terrific addition."
MacLean said he had scouted Fedorov in two games over the weekend. Fedorov is flying to Columbus on Tuesday night and is expected to be in uniform when the Blue Jackets play St. Louis on Wednesday night at Nationwide Arena.
The Mighty Ducks will gain much-needed room under the new NHL salary cap.
"We had set aside a reserve of around a million and a half dollars to deal with injuries, and it was inadequate to do for that purpose. So it solves that problem. It also gives us cap room to add a player," Anaheim executive vice president and general manager Brian Burke said.
"I couldn't sell this as a stand-alone hockey deal and I won't try to, there's a cap consideration here, but it's also players that we think will help."
Columbus had expected to contend for a postseason berth for the first time in the franchise's five-year existence, but is off to a 5-13-0 start. With 10 points, the Blue Jackets are next to last in the Western Conference.
Fedorov has 431 goals and 589 assists in 15 seasons in the NHL. The speedy Russian had a career-high 56 goals for the Red Wings in 1993-94, when he won the Hart Trophy as the league's MVP.
Fedorov will make $6.08 million this season and each of the next two. The Mighty Ducks will gain room under the new NHL salary cap.
"He is an expensive player, but we feel good about it," MacLean said.
The Blue Jackets had been seeking a veteran center to play with 21-year-old star Rick Nash when he is finally healthy. Nash missed most of the preseason with a high ankle sprain, then sprained his knee and is out until mid-December.
The 32-year-old Wright had four assists in 18 games this season for Columbus, and the 25-year-old Beauchemin had two assists in 11 games.
Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press
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