With the emotions from the gold medal game still pumping through the blood, Ray Shero begins the trade deadline fun with the acquisition of Jordan Leopold of the Florida Panthers, as reported by NHL.com.
Leopold, the 29-year-old defenseman, was a second-round pick in 1999 by the Anaheim Ducks. This would appear to be Shero's way of adding bulk and size to the blue line by acquiring the 6'0", 200 lbs defenseman. His 59 hits would place him third on the team for defensemen behind Brooks Orpik and Kris Letang.
Leopold's stat line looks like this: 61 Games, 7 G, 11 A, 18 PTS, - 7, 22 PIM, and 1 PP Goal.
The cost for Leopold was fairly steep, a second-round pick in the 2010 draft. The fact that Leopold's contract is up at the end of the year doesn't help the situation any, either. I believe this would lead to another trade. With Leopold on the blue line, that leaves one of the Pen's other defensemen out in the cold.
With only $1.750 million for the year, the Pens could trade any of their blue liners as all are more expense than Leopold. My guess would be that the acquisition would make Mark Eaton expendable.
Stay Tuned for more trade deadline news.