The Montreal Canadiens have apparently decided that Carey Price, all of 20 years old, will be the goalie to take them forward, trading Cristobal Huet to the Washington Capitals for a 2009 second-round draft pick.
Huet, 32, has been Montreal's No. 1 goalie this season, so the move comes as a bit of a surprise. The 2007 All-Star is 21-12-6 with a 2.55 goals-against average. He is the final year of a two-year contract and scheduled to be an unrestricted free agent this summer.
"They said they are excited to have me, and they hope I can help them make a push for the playoffs," Huet, who was scheduled to arrive in Washington on Tuesday night, said in a conference call with reporters. "They are a young group of guys playing hard and they were hard to play against."
What is unknown is the status of the Capitals' top goalie, Olie Kolzig, who is 21-19-6 with a 3.03 GAA this season. Washington has climbed from the bottom of the NHL to within striking distance of a playoff berth.
"It was a surprise," Capitals coach Bruce Boudreau said of the move. "When we played Montreal, the talk was that Huet was one of the top 10 goaltenders in the league. So anytime you can acquire that, you acquire it."
The draft pick Montreal gets was previously acquired by Washington from Anaheim for Brian Sutherby.
Red Wings acquire Kings' Stuart for two picks
Detroit gave up a second-round pick this year and a fourth-round selection next year in the deal.
Stuart had five goals and 16 assists for Los Angeles this season. He made his NHL debut during the 1999-2000 season with San Jose and went on to play for Boston, Calgary and the Kings.
The league-leading Red Wings made the deal just before the trade deadline.
Senators acquire some toughness with Lapointe
Lapointe, who had three goals, four assists and 47 penalty minutes in 52 games for the Blackhawks this season, was signed by the team as a free agent on Aug. 4, 2005.
Avs get Salei from Panthers for rights to Skrastins
Last season, the 33-year-old Salei had six goals and 26 assists, both career highs.
Salei spent 11 years in the NHL, the last two with Florida after nine with the Anaheim Ducks. He's missed only four games in the past four seasons.
The deal was announced a day after Colorado agreed to terms on a deal to bring former MVP Peter Forsberg back to Denver for the rest of the season.
Capitals get Fedorov from Blue Jackets, Cooke from Canucks
Fedorov, 38, is in the final year of a five-year, $40 million contract and will become an unrestricted free agent this summer. He has 469 goals and 663 assists in 17 seasons in the NHL.
The speedy Russian had a career-high 56 goals and 120 points for the Detroit Red Wings in 1993-94, when he won the Hart Trophy as the league's MVP.
Cooke, a 5-foot-11, 205-pound winger and penalty-killer, has seven goals, 16 points and 64 penalty minutes in 61 games this season. Pettinger has one season left on a three-year contract he signed with Washington in 2006.
Cooke, who can become an unrestricted free agent after the season, called the Capitals "a dangerous hockey club to play against."
Fedorov is expected to arrive in Washington on Wednesday. Cooke's arrival could be delayed by visa issues, the Capitals said.
Blue Jackets send Foote to Avalanche
Adam Foote didn't want to be traded, but he and the Blue Jackets couldn't agree on a deal. In the end, Foote agreed to waive his no-trade clause for just one team -- the Avalanche, where he played his first 13 seasons, and the deed was done.
Foote, a defenseman and the Blue Jackets' captain, was traded to Colorado for a first-round draft pick in either 2008 or 2009.
"I found out a lot of teams were interested in me, but I didn't want to go anywhere, because I wanted to finish the job here," Foote told the Columbus Dispatch. "I wanted to play two more seasons here and get in the playoffs."
The Blue Jackets had been offering a two-year deal worth $7 million, but Foote wanted a two-year deal worth $8 million.
Ducks trade for Kings goalie Aubin
Anaheim acquired goaltender Jean-Sebastien Aubin from Kings in exchange for a seventh-round pick in the 2008 draft. In 19 games this season, Aubin is 5-6-1 with a 3.19 GAA.
The Ducks also acquired defenseman Jay Leach from Tampa Bay in exchange for right winger Brandon Segal and a seventh-round pick in the 2008 draft, and they traded right winger Brandon Bochenski to Nashville for future considerations.
Janssen goes home to St. Louis in trade from Devils
Salvador, who can become an unrestricted free agent after the season, gives a blue-line boost to the Devils, who have scratched veteran defensemen Karel Rachunek and Vitaly Vishnevski in recent games.
Salvador, 32, is in his seventh NHL season -- all with St. Louis -- and is earning $1.5 million. In 56 games this season, Salvador has one goal and 10 assists.
Janssen, 23, is under contract for this season and next at $550,000 per year. In 95 career games with the Devils, the St. Louis native has one goal and 205 penalty minutes.
Janssen spent most of the season on the long-term injury list after injuring a shoulder during the preseason. Janssen played in three games with AHL Lowell on a conditioning stint before being activated by New Jersey on Monday night, presumably to be traded.
Panthers acquire Kilger, Belak and Skrastins
Kilger came from Toronto for a third-round pick in this year's NHL entry draft, and Belak was obtained from the Maple Leafs for a fifth-round pick. Florida acquired Skrastins and a third-round pick from Colorado for defenseman Ruslan Salei.
The Panthers have lost four of their past five games and are in danger of missing the playoffs for the eighth consecutive season.
Kilger will fill the void created with the injury to Richard Zednik, whose carotid artery was sliced at Buffalo on Feb. 10. Kilger has 107 goals and 111 assists in 714 games, and this season he had 10 goals and seven assists with 53 games with the Maple Leafs.
Belak has eight goals and 21 assists in 425 games. This season he has scored one goal in 30 games.
Skrastins has 22 goals and 74 assists in 582 games. He has one goal and three assists this season in 43 games. He broke the NHL record for consecutive games played by a defenseman when he appeared in his 487th straight game on Feb. 8, 2007.
Hurricanes trade Ladd for Blackhawks' Ruutu
The deal gives the injury-depleted Hurricanes some depth at center as they push toward a berth in the playoffs.
"The biggest thing is, Ruutu is more of a two-positional player," Carolina assistant general manager Ron Francis said. "With all of our injuries right now, it gives us a little bit more flexibility in case we need to move bodies around in the lineup."
Ruutu and Ladd have similar salaries -- Ruutu is making $1.88 million this season, and Ladd is making $1.83 million -- and both will be restricted free agents in the offseason, meaning they will return to their respective teams as long as the clubs match any offers they receive.
Ruutu, 25, has six goals and 15 assists in 60 games with Chicago.
Ladd was the Hurricanes' first-round draft pick in 2004 who was a key member of their second line along with Sergei Samsonov. He has registered four points in his last five games.
Preds make moves for Hlavac, Bochenski
Hlavac had nine goals and 13 assists for the Lightning this season. He made his NHL debut in the 1999-2000 season with the New York Rangers and has also played for Philadelphia, Vancouver and Carolina. Tampa Bay will get a seventh round draft pick this year.
Bochenski was acquired for future considerations. He started this season with the Boston before being traded to Anaheim, where he had two goals and two assists in 12 games.
Rangers deal Hossa to Phoenix in five-player swap
The Rangers sent left wing Marcel Hossa and minor league goaltender Al Montoya to Phoenix for right wing Fredrik Sjostrom and a pair of minor leaguers -- goaltender David LeNeveu and left wing Josh Gratton.
The Rangers also acquired defenseman Christian Backman from the Blues in exchange for a fourth-round pick in this year's draft.
The 26-year-old Hossa has a goal and 7 assists and 8 penalty minutes in 36 games with the Rangers this season. Hossa, selected by Montreal in the 1st round of the 2000 draft, has 31 goals and 30 assists and 102 penalty minutes in 223 career games with Montreal and the Rangers.
The 24-year-old Sjostrom, drafted by Phoenix in the first round in 2001, has 10 goals and 9 assists and 14 penalty minutes in 51 games with the Coyotes this season. He has 32 goals and 41 assists and 126 penalty minutes in 261 career games, all with Phoenix.
In a separate deal with St. Louis, the Rangers acquired the 27-year-old Backman, who has appeared in 45 games this season, registering one goal and nine assists, along with 30 penalty minutes.
Information from The Associated Press contributed to this report.