The Montreal Canadiens added a level of offense to their blueline Tuesday, acquiring defenseman James Wisniewski from the New York Islanders in exchange for a pair of draft picks.
The 26-year-old Wisniewski is having a career offensive season for the Islanders, with his 21 points tying him for the team lead. He also has a team-best 18 assists.
Wisniewski automatically becomes the highest-scoring defenseman in Montreal in the absence of Andrei Markov, who is out for the season with a knee injury. Markov had 1 goal in seven games prior to his injury; as a team, the Canadiens have just 11 goals from their blue line.
Roman Hamrlik's 3 goals and 16 points currently lead Montreal's defensemen.
Chicago Blackhawks, Wisniewski was dealt to the Islanders during the summer after posting a career-best 30 points in 69 games with the Anaheim Ducks.
In 286 NHL games with the Blackhawks, Ducks and Islanders, Wisniewski has 20 goals, 118 points and 282 penalty minutes.
The Islanders will receive a second-round compensatory pick the Canadiens were due to receive at the 2011 Entry Draft. If the Canadiens make the 2011 Stanley Cup Playoffs and Wisniewski plays in at least 50 percent of the Canadiens' playoff games, the Islanders will receive the Canadiens' 2012 fifth-round pick; if that pick is unavailable the Islanders will get a fourth-round pick in 2013.