We don't waste any time following the break huh?
According to George Richards of the Miami Herald, the Penguins have acquired defenseman Jordan Leopold (6-foot-1, 200 pounds) from the Panthers in exchange for a second round pick in this summer's draft.
In 61 games, Leopold (right), 29, has 18 points (seven goals, 11 assists) and is a minus-7. The Panthers acquired Leopold this past offseason when traded along with a draft pick in exchange for defenseman Jay Bouwmeester.
This is the third time within a calendar year Leopld has been traded. At last year's trade deadline on March 4, Leopold was dealth from the Avalanche to the Flames in exchange for Lawrence Nycholat, Ryan Wilson and a draft pick.
With a salary cap hit of $1.75 million, Leopold is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent this offseason.
Leopold is in his seventh NHL season. In 416 games, he has 127 points. He was a member of the 2003-04 Flames team that went to the Stanley Cup final
While in Colorado, he played for head coach Tony Granato who is currently an assistant coach with the Penguins.
While with the University of Minnesota, Baker won the Hobey Baker Award, college hockey's equivalent of the Heisman Trophy, in 2002. He will become the fourth winner of that award to have suited up for the Penguins. Brian Bonin (1996), Brian Holzinger (1995) and Kip Miller (1990) are the other three players.
EN Says: We're slow to second guess Ray Shero, but unless this move is intended to set up another, this one is a little odd. The Penguins need someone physcial on defense. They need some muscle. Jordan Leopold is not exactly Brooks Orpik.
But that's not to say Leopold's not a quality player. He's a very nice top four defenseman. He's a guy who can help you out on offense. He's a quality puck mover. And in his own zone, he's very good at getting the puck out of danger. And that is something the Penguins have had some issues with this season.
He won't be asked to it too much here in Pittsburgh, but he can play some serious minutes. He has averaged 22:25 of ice time this season.
Don't be surprised if this does set up another move, especially on defense. The Penguins now have eight defensemen on NHL-only contracts on the roster.
-Some highlights. Hey look! A goal against Martin Brodeur and the Devils in December:
-A goal against the Islanders in January:
-A goal against the Predators off a three-on-two rush in November:
-Despite his reputation, he tagged Buffalo's Paul Gaustad with a solid check:
-And here's a highlight from last season. As a member of the Avalanche, he beat Detroit's Chris Osgood on a penalty shot with a nifty move:
(Photo: Abelimages / Getty Images)