New Jersey Devils Acquire Alexei Ponikarovsky

Mark FischerContributor IIJanuary 21, 2012

In a move to help add depth, the New Jersey Devils have acquired forward Alexei Ponikarovsky from the Carolina Hurricanes for minor league defenseman Joseph Sova and a 2012 fourth-round draft pick, according to tsn.ca.

The Devils, to date, have received little to no production from their bottom six, with the exception of right winger David Clarkson. In Ponikarovsky, the Devils get a guy capable of potting 10 to 15 goals a year. Though, since being traded from Toronto to Pittsburgh in 2010, Ponikarovsky offensive production has dipped—he's registered just 15 points in 49 contests for the 'Canes this year.

However, considering the price paid, this trade should be considered a win-win for Lou Lamoriello and company. In addition, Ponikarovski is on a one-year deal, worth just $1.5 million. If Lamoriello doesn't like what he sees from the towering 6' 4" left winger, he can let him walk in the offseason.

This deal also gives Lamoriello the lee-way to send struggling 21-year-old Matias Tedenby to the minors, where he can regain his confidence. The left winger has put up just six points in 43 games, while playing in a diminished role. (UPDATE: Mattias Tedenby has been sent to the minors, according to Devils beat reporter Tom Gulitti)

Ponikarovsky will likely team up with Jacob Josefson and David Clarkson to form a formidable third line. 

While he may not light up the lamp as often as he would like, his defensive skills make Ponikarovsky a nice rental for the Devils.

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