RALEIGH, NC - Don Waddell, President and General Manager of the National Hockey League's Carolina Hurricanes, today announced that the team has acquired forward Cliff Pu, Buffalo's second-round selection in the 2019 NHL Draft and Buffalo's third- and sixth-round selections in the 2020 NHL Draft in exchange for forward Jeff Skinner.
"First and foremost, we thank Jeff for the impact he had on our franchise and our area, both on and off the ice," said Waddell. "He's a good person who has been an excellent representative for our team in the community throughout the past eight years.
"However, with Jeff becoming an unrestricted free agent next summer, this was the right time for us to move on, and to provide Jeff with a fresh start in Buffalo. We talked to every team in the league over the past four months, and ultimately the Sabres were the team that provided us with the best value in return, including three picks and a prospect we like in Cliff Pu."
Pu, 20, completed his fourth season in the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) in 2017-18, totaling 84 points (29g, 55a) in 65 games for London and Kingston. Acquired by Kingston on January 4, he led the Frontenacs with 13 assists and totaled 17 points in 16 playoff games, as Kingston advanced to the conference final before falling to eventual champion Hamilton. A Richmond Hill, Ont., native, Pu was teammates with fellow Hurricanes prospect Jeremy Helvig in Kingston.
Selected by Buffalo in the third round, 69th overall, at the 2016 NHL Draft, Pu signed a three-year, entry-level contract with Buffalo on October 23, 2017, and is eligible to play in the American Hockey League (AHL) this season. He totaled 210 career points (80g, 130a) in 232 career games with Oshawa, London and Kingston.
Carolina's first round pick in the 2010 NHL Draft, Skinner departs the organization ranked fifth in franchise history in goals (204), seventh in points (379) and ninth in games played (579). He appeared in the NHL All-Star Game in 2011, and won the Calder Memorial Trophy as the league's top rookie that same season.