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Anisimov traded to Senators by Blackhawks for Smith

Ottawa, Chicago exchange veteran forwards

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NHL Tonight: CHI-OTT Trade

Senators acquire Anisimov from Blackhawks for Smith

The crew discusses the Blackhawks sending forward Artem Anisimov to the Senators in exchange for forward Zack Smith

  • 02:33 •

Artem Anisimov was traded to the Ottawa Senators by the Chicago Blackhawks on Tuesday for Zack Smith.

Anisimov, who had 37 points (15 goals, 22 assists) in 78 games last season, has two seasons remaining on a five-year contract he signed with Chicago on July 1, 2015.

"Artem is a big, competitive center with excellent hands and playmaking ability," Senators general manager Pierre Dorion said. "He plays a 200-foot game and will contribute to our depth on both special teams. We're acquiring an experienced player who can score and at the same time is responsible in his own zone. We really like how he will fit with the makeup of our team."

 

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Selected by the New York Rangers in the second round (No. 54) of the 2006 NHL Draft, the 31-year-old has 347 points (163 goals, 184 assists) in 703 regular-season games with the Blackhawks, Columbus Blue Jackets and Rangers, and 17 points (eight goals, nine assists) in 43 Stanley Cup Playoff games.

Anisimov will be the second-oldest forward on the Ottawa roster after Bobby Ryan, 32, and the third-oldest skater; defenseman Ron Hainsey is 38.

"We don't want our team to be just a bunch of younger players," Dorion said. "We feel that having a veteran presence will be beneficial for these younger players to grow and develop."

Smith, a 31-year-old forward, had 28 points (nine goals, 19 assists) in 70 games with Ottawa last season. He has two seasons remaining on a four-year contract he signed with the Senators on Jan. 23, 2017.

"He's a versatile player," Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman said. "He's played wing and he's played center, which we like. He certainly plays with a competitive side to him, he plays with an edge. He's had some years in the past when he's scored a lot, but I think the thing we like about his game is the versatility and you notice him. He's tough to play against out there. I think the other teams don't find it too fun sometimes."

Selected by Ottawa in the third round (No. 79) of the 2008 NHL Draft, Smith has 193 points (94 goals, 99 assists) in 612 games with the Senators, and nine points (two goals, seven assists) in 45 playoff games.

Smith has familiarity with Chicago assistant Marc Crawford, who became Senators coach after Guy Boucher was fired March 1. Crawford was 7-10-1 in Ottawa's final 18 games last season.

"Obviously I had a great time playing for Marc when he was in Ottawa," Smith said. "It was a tough year for both of us. When you don't make the playoffs in back-to-back years, they look to the players, they look to the coaches. So I'm excited to have a fresh start with Marc, and I think if he had anything bad to say, the trade probably wouldn't have gone through. So I'm excited to start. I'm excited there's some familiarity with at least one of the coaches and I don't go in there with a total clean slate."

NHL.com staff writer Tracey Myers contributed to this report

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