COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Blue Jackets made a couple of moves in the hours before the NHL trade deadline Wednesday, shoring up their defense while shedding a veteran due to become a free agent.
The CBJ dealt forward Marian Gaborik to the Los Angeles Kings in exchange for forward Matt Frattin, a second round pick in the 2014 or 2015 NHL Draft and a conditional third round pick in either 2014 or 2015, general manager Jarmo Kekalainen said.
The 32-year-old Gaborik will be a free agent after the season. He was making $7.5 million a year, with the Blue Jackets expected to pick up a portion of the $1.9 million in remaining salary. He has missed games with a sprained knee and a broken collarbone this season, limiting him to just 22 games, but is healthy for the stretch run.
The 26-year-old Frattin has two goals and four assists in 40 games.
In dire need of immediate help on the blue line, Columbus traded a fifth-round draft pick to the Edmonton Oilers for veteran defenseman Nick Schultz.
The 31-year-old Schultz has no goals and four assists in 60 games this season, his third with the Oilers after spending most of his 13-year career in Minnesota.
Two of the Blue Jackets’ top defensemen are sidelined. Fedor Tyutin injured an ankle while playing for Russia in the Olympics and is out for another week or two and prized rookie Ryan Murray (lower body) is day to day.