NHL: Minnesota Wild trades Eric Staal to Buffalo Sabers

BUFFALO, NY – The Buffalo Sabers acquired Minnesota Wild center Eric Staal in return for forward Marcus Johansson on Wednesday.

The deal is the first completed by new Sabers general manager Kevyn Adams, who replaced Jason Botterill in June. Adams knows Staal well, as the pair won the Stanley Cup as teammates with the Carolina Hurricanes in 2006.

Staal and Johansson are in the last year of their contract and the Sabers will save US $ 1.25 million under payroll. However, the Buffalo troop is aging because Staal, who is 35, is six years older than Johansson.

Staal will fill a need at the center. He is a 17-season NHL veteran and has scored 19 goals in 66 games in 2019-20. He also amassed 28 assists in this shortened season due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Staal ranks sixth among active NHL players with 436 goals and eighth with 1,021 points.

Johansson struggled to find his place with the Sabers in his first season with the team. He has nine goals and 30 points in 60 games.

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