Wild ship Martin Havlat to San Jose for Dany Heatley
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Just days after sending All-star defenseman Brent Burns to San Jose, the Wild have struck another blockbuster deal with the Sharks.
In a surprising move, the Wild acquired forward Dany Heatley from San Jose in exchange for fellow forward Martin Havlat.
Bringing in Heatley gives the Wild an explosive, some times volatile, offensive force, who has scored 325 goals in nine seasons in the NHL.
"We are excited to add Dany Heatley, one of the top goal scorers in the NHL, to our team," Wild general manager Chuck Fletcher said in a release. "He is a quality player who has averaged more than a point a game in his nine-year career."
The 30-year-old Germany native had an up-and-down two-year tenure with the Sharks. He recorded 82 points (39 points, 43 assists) during the 2009-10 season, but saw a drop off in production last year with 64 points (26 goals, 38 assists).
In two seasons with the Wild, Havlat was one of the team's top players, playing in 151 games and racking up 40 goals and 76 assists. He was their leading scorer last season with 22 goals.
The remaining four years of Havlat's original six-year, $60 million contract he signed in 2009 will be taken on by the Sharks, while the Wild are on the hook for the final three years of Heatley's five-year deal ($7.5 million per year).
After missing the playoffs three years in a row, Fletcher is showing he's not afraid to shake up his roster in an attempt to find the right fit. The third-year general manager has already made two big-time trades in a still young off-season. On the first night of the NHL Draft on June 24, Fletcher surprised some by shipping Burns to the Sharks in a deal that brought forward Devin Setoguchi and center Charlie Coyle to the Wild.
Both moves with San Jose reflect the Wild's desperate need to shore up their offense. They were 26th in the NHL in goals scored last season (203).