Wild trade Johnsson, Leddy to 'Hawks, lose to ThrashersMinnesota Sports
- The Minnesota made several moves off the ice before Friday's game against Atlanta. However, they were more moves than the Wild made on the ice as they lost to the Thrashers for the first time in the Xcel Energy Center.
ST. PAUL - The Wild made news even before they took the ice against the Atlanta Thrashers on Friday night, trading veteran defenseman Kim Johnsson and 2009 first round pick Nick Leddy to the Chicago Blackhawks for defenseman Cam Barker.
Johnsson, who is in the final year of a contract and making $5.3 million this season, was unlikely to feature in the Wild’s future plans. Johnsson led the Wild in ice time this season at 23:46 per game. The 33 year-old Swede has 6 goals and 14 points this year.
Barker, 23, was the third overall pick in the 2004 draft (After Alexander Ovechkin and Evgeni Malkin) had a career season in 2008-09, with 6 goals and 40 assists in just 68 games. In 58 games this season, Barker has 4 goals and 14 assists. The Winnipeg native is currently making $3 million this season and will make $3.25 million next year before he enters restricted free agency.
The Wild also traded away their 2009 first-round draft pick in Leddy, a former Eden Prairie prep star who is currently a freshman at the University of Minnesota.
The Wild also called up their Cody Almond, their 5th round pick in 2007. Almond, who had been playing in Houston, made his NHL debut against Atlanta.
Niclas Bergfors scored the go-ahead goal with 8:55 left in the third period, as the Atlanta Thrashers held on for a 3-2 win over the Minnesota Wild at Xcel Energy Center.
Evander Kane and Nik Antropov also scored for the Thrashers, who regrouped from a 4-3 overtime loss at Colorado on Wednesday. Atlanta, which had dropped four of five overall entering Friday's game, also snapped a three-game road losing skid. Johan Hedberg was spectacular, turning aside 36-of-38 shots.
The victory was the Thrashers' first-ever at the Xcel Energy Center in five tries. They had lost three and tied one in the previous four trips.
Andrew Brunette and Andrew Ebbett had the goals for Minnesota, which has dropped four of six. Despite the loss, the Wild are still an impressive 20-8-2 at home this season. Niklas Backstrom allowed three goals on 24 shots in defeat.