Anaheim Ducks acquire defenseman Kevin Bieksa in trade with Canucks

July 1, 2015

The Anaheim Ducks announced that they have acquired defenseman Kevin Bieksa from the Vancouver Canucks in exchange for a second-round selection in the 2016 NHL Draft.  The move was prompted after veteran defenseman Francois Beauchemin indicated to the team that he wanted to seek greener pastures elsewhere in free agency.

Bieksa, 34, scored 56-185=241 points with a +22 rating and 879 penalty minutes (PIM) in 597 career NHL games with Vancouver. Among all-time franchise defensemen, Bieksa ranked sixth in scoring, assists and games, and fourth in PIM. Among franchise playoff leaders for defensemen, he led in goals (10), ranked third in appearances (71) and sixth in scoring.

Selected by Vancouver in the fifth round (151st overall) of the 2001 NHL Draft, Bieksa collected 4-10=14 points with an even plus/minus rating and 77 PIM in 60 games for Vancouver last season. Among team leaders, he ranked third in hits (109) and fifth in blocked shots (93). Bieksa also appeared in six Stanley Cup Playoff games, going scoreless with nine PIM.

In other Ducks news, the team announced that it has signed goaltender Matt Hackett to a two-year contract, and center Chris Mueller and defenseman Joe Piskula to one-year contracts.

Hackett, 25, has appeared in 26 career NHL games with Minnesota and Buffalo, going 4-17-2 with a 3.11 goals-against average (GAA) and .906 save percentage (SV%). He split last season with Buffalo (0-4-1, 4.32 GAA in five games) and the Sabres’ American Hockey League affiliate (AHL) in Rochester (8-5-3, 2.76 GAA in 16 games).

Selected by Minnesota in the third round (77th overall) of the 2009 NHL Draft, Hackett set career highs in wins (3), GAA (2.37), SV% (.922), appearances (12) and minutes played (556) with the Wild during his rookie season in 2011-12. The 6-2, 171-pound goaltender has also played five AHL seasons with Houston and Rochester, posting an 86-75-18 record with three shutouts, a 2.59 GAA and .910 SV% in 184 career games.

Mueller, 29, has scored 3-7=10 points with eight PIM in 53 career NHL games with Nashville, Dallas and the New York Rangers. He played seven games for the Rangers last season, picking up 1-1=2 points.

The 5-11, 210-pound center made his Stanley Cup Playoff debut with Dallas in 2014, going scoreless in four games during the First Round vs. Anaheim. Mueller has played 447 career AHL games with Hartford, Texas, Milwaukee, Lake Erie and Grand Rapids, scoring 131-155=286 points with a +19 rating and 214 PIM.

Piskula, 30, has played 13 career NHL games with Nashville, Calgary and Los Angeles, going scoreless with 10 PIM.

The 6-3, 208-pound defenseman appeared in one game for Nashville and 67 for the Predators’ AHL affiliate in Milwaukee last season. Piskula is a veteran of nine AHL seasons with Milwaukee, Abbotsford and Manchester, scoring 13-102=115 points with a +78 rating and 421 PIM in 533 career games. He has also appeared in 33 career Calder Cup Playoff games, recording 2-4=6 points with 20 PIM.

By Staff of and news services

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