Pat Quinn, general manager and head coach of the Toronto Maple Leafs, announced Thursday that the club has obtained the rights to defenceman Robert Svehla from the Florida Panthers in exchange for the rights to Dmitry Yushkevich.
Svehla, 33, completed his eighth NHL season (all with Florida) in 2001-02 and recorded seven goals, 22 assists, 29 points with 87 penalty minutes. He led the NHL in hits (386) last season and placed second in 2000-01 with 354.
Svehla placed 11th overall in the league in average ice-time and first on the Panthers last season. Svehla finished last season by playing in his 300th consecutive game April 14 versus Tampa Bay, a Panther club record.
Svehla was the only Panther to play in all 82 games and he accomplished the feat for the third straight season. He is Florida's all-time leader in games played (553), assists (229), points by a defenceman (290), goals by a defenceman (61) and powerplay goals by a defenceman (26).
In 573 career NHL games the native of Martin, Slovakia has 61 goals, 229 assists, 290 points, 26 powerplay goals and 603 penalty minutes.
Yushkevich played seven seasons in a Maple Leaf uniform beginning in 1995 and collected 25 goals,110 assists, and 135 points in 506 games.