The major "get" was defenseman
To acquire Wisniewski, the Ducks parted with minor league center William Karlsson, a 2015 second-round pick, and unproductive forward
"We're capable now of competing against most of the teams in our
"It was more important to address the ability to play different games against different teams. We felt that was becoming a problem throughout the season. There's not that many players coming, and 'Wiz' has been here before, so that's a plus."
The Ducks staggered through a 6-7-1 rut from Jan. 29-Feb. 25. Their power play ranks in the bottom third of the NHL and is missing injured top-scoring defenseman
"Our power play has struggled mightily for two years now. Wiz is not afraid to shoot the puck," Murray said. "We felt that was a move that had to be made."
Wisniewski's salary-cap hit will be $5.5 million annually through 2017-18. In Columbus, he had eight goals and 29 points in 56 games this season. He suffered a bone bruise when struck by a puck recently, but is expected to play again within a week.
"It's a dream come true, to be able to go to a legit [
The 6-foot-4, 214-pound Despres was plus-nine with 64 penalty minutes in 59 games for Pittsburgh, contributing two goals and 17 points.
"Big, strong, young hockey player [who's] only going to get better," Murray said.
Lovejoy was emotional before leaving the Ducks, saying he didn't realize he'd been traded until he returned to the locker room after practice and saw 15 text messages on his phone welcoming him back to Pittsburgh, where he began his NHL career in 2008.
"I thought I was safe," he said. "And then I wasn't."
Lovejoy said he'll look fondly upon his time with the Ducks, who acquired him from the
"I've loved it," he said. "This place has been amazing for me both personally and professionally. I was given an opportunity here that I am so grateful for. I've always thought I could do it, but I didn't know. I forever will be grateful to Anaheim for that. If I'm leaving here, I'm excited to go back there."
Holzer, 27, told Canadian TV network TSN that it was his girlfriend who informed him he'd been traded. "I'm a little bit out of words," said Holzer, who had six points and 25 penalty minutes in 34 games with Toronto.
"It made our team better," Ducks Coach Bruce Boudreau said of the deals. "I guess the proof will be in the pudding when we see how we react to it all, but we're excited about what happened."
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