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Hall brings needed offense to New Jersey

by Staff Writer / New Jersey Devils



The Edmonton Oilers traded left wing Taylor Hall to the New Jersey Devils for defenseman Adam Larsson on Wednesday.

"Taylor is a dynamic player with speed and youth that changes the complexion of our team," Devils general manager Ray Shero said. "We feel he fits into the direction we wanted to go a year ago which is that fast, supportive and attacking style."

Hall, 24, had 26 goals and 65 points in 82 games this season. Taken by the Oilers with the first pick of the 2010 NHL Draft, Hall has 132 goals and 328 points in 381 games. He's scored at least 20 goals four times in six seasons.

The trade adds needed offense to the Devils' lineup. They were 30th in the League at 2.22 goals per game this season, and their leader in goals and points, forward Kyle Palmieri, can become a restricted free agent Friday.

Larsson, 23, had three goals and 18 points in 82 games this season, and averaged an NHL-career best 22:30 of ice time per game. The fourth pick of the 2011 draft, Larsson has nine goals and 64 points in 274 games.

He fills a need for a right-shot defenseman; the only right-shot defender signed by the Oilers for next season is Mark Fayne. Adam Clendening and Eric Gryba, the other right-shot defensemen who finished 2015-16 with the Oilers, will be unrestricted free agents Friday.

Larsson, 23, had three goals and 15 assists in 82 games this season, and averaged an NHL-career best 22:30 of ice time per game. The right-shot defender was the No. 4 pick of the 2011 NHL Draft. He has 64 points (nine goals, 55 assists) in 274 games.

"In the last four or five months I've been very public in saying that we're looking for some defensemen," Oilers general manager Peter Chiarelli said. "We really have to shore up our defense. And we pounded the pavement and this is the price that you have to pay.

"It's unfortunate that it's a player of Taylor's caliber but we're getting a really good player back. Adam … he's a very smart player and it took him a little while to get going, but he had a terrific year this past year. He moves the puck, he defends well, he can log a lot of minutes, he can play 25, 27, 28 minutes. He can match up against all the top forwards, he can move the puck and he has more skill to show also."

The Oilers have one right-shot defender signed for next season, Mark Fayne. Adam Clendening and Eric Gryba, the other right-shot defensemen who finished 2015-16 with the Oilers, will become unrestricted free agents Friday.

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