General Manager Dale Tallon announced tonight that the Blackhawks have acquired forward Jason Williams from the Detroit Red Wings in a three-way deal that saw defenseman Lasse Kukkonen and a third round pick in 2007 going to Philadelphia. The Blackhawks acquired forward Kyle Calder from Philadelphia in the Kukkonen deal and then traded Calder to the Detroit Red Wings for center/winger Jason Williams.
"We've been trying to acquire Jason Williams since last summer," said Blackhawks General Manager Dale Tallon. "He is a quality individual who can add to our team offensively and can also play the point on the power play. We feel with his speed and skill he is another piece of the puzzle as we continue to move forward in making our team better."
"I'm definitely excited about coming to Chicago," said Williams. "Any time you can be a part of an original six team it's special. Chicago is making strides in the right direction. I'm looking forward to coming to Chicago and in being a major factor on the team. I'm happy to be going to a team that wants me and I'm looking forward to helping the Blackhawks."
Williams, 26, 5.11, 185 pound center/winger has appeared in 58 games this season for the Detroit Red Wings scoring 11 goals and 15 assists for 26 points with 24 penalty minutes and a plus/minus rating of +7.
In his NHL career, Williams has appeared in 233 career games scoring 49 goals while adding 67 assists for 116 points with 73 penalty minutes. He posted his best NHL season last year (2005-06) with the Red Wings notching 21 goals and 37 assists for 58 points in 80 games, all career highs. Williams signed with the Red Wings as a free agent in September 2000 after playing his junior hockey for Peterborough in the Ontario Hockey League.
Williams also has appeared in 20 NHL playoff games recording one goal and one assist for two points and 10 penalty minutes. He was a member of the Red Wings 2001-02 Stanley Cup Championship team.
Kukkonen, the Blackhawks 4th round pick in the 2003 NHL Entry Draft, appeared in 54 games this season with the Blackhawks recording five goals and nine assists for 14 points and 30 penalty minutes while posting a plus/minus rating of +5.
In his career, Kukkonen has appeared in 64 games, all with the Blackhawks, recording five goals and 10 assists for 15 points and 34 penalty minutes.
Kukkonen was in his second tour of duty with the Blackhawks having played in 10 games in the 2003-04 season posting one assist. He returned to Finland playing for Karpat in both 2004-05 and 2005-06. He was also a member of the Finnish Olympic Team in the 2006 Winter Olympics.