Penguins trade D Oleksiak back to Stars
The Pittsburgh Penguins traded defenseman Jamie Oleksiak to the Dallas Stars for a fourth-round pick on Monday, just over a year after the Stars traded Oleksiak to the Penguins for a fourth-round pick. Oleksiak, 26, was originally dealt from Dallas to Pittsburgh on Dec. 19, 2017 for a conditional fourth-rounder, which would be the higher of two fourth-rounders the Penguins owned. That pick is now headed back to Pittsburgh to bring Oleksiak back to Dallas, which needs reinforcements after losing Marc Methot to injury.
"Our blueline has been depleted by injury all season and acquiring Jamie will give us depth at defense," general manager Jim Nill said in a statement. "We know him very well and we're excited to have him back in the fold." Oleksiak has 11 points (four goals, seven assists) in 36 games this season while averaging 15:52 of ice time, but he played in just four of the last 14 games before the All-Star break, a span that included seven healthy scratches. With Justin Schultz approaching a return from a broken leg, the Penguins had significant depth on defense, spurring trade talk around Oleksiak's name.
"There's always rumors and always speculation, so you can't really dwell on it," Oleksiak told reporters Monday morning, a few hours before the deal. "That can get in your head, so I just try to come in every day and think of it as a new day when you can put in some work." He'll now return to the team that drafted him 14th overall in 2011. Through five-plus seasons in Dallas, the 6-foot-7, 255-pounder had 22 points (seven goals, 15 assists) in 140 games while averaging 14:45 of ice time.
The Stars also announced that Methot had successful surgery to repair a cartilage defect in his left knee. He will miss the rest of the season. --Field Level Media
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