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Atlanta lands Brashear, Rissmiller in White trade

by Staff
Two of the League's most aggressive teams this summer combined forces Monday on a trade as each continues to reshape its playing rosters.

The Atlanta Thrashers, by far the busiest team of the offseason, moved center Todd White to the New York Rangers in exchange for forwards Donald Brashear and Patrick Rissmiller.

Multiple reports have the Atlanta Thrashers placing Brashear on waivers. If he clears, he will most likely be bought out by Atlanta. The team has more versatility with Rissmiller, who will make $1 million this year. Aside from making the team, he can play in the minors or be bought out.

White, in the last year of his current deal, had 7 goals and 26 points and was a minus-11 last season. But the 35-year-old did have 22 goals the previous season. In fact, White has topped the 15-goal mark in four of his eight full seasons in the NHL and has had 40 or more points five times, including a career-high 73 in 2008-09.

His departure is just the latest move for new GM Rick Dudley, who has been hyper vigilant for opportunities to remake his roster. Dudley already has added power forward Dustin Byfuglien and Andrew Ladd and Ben Eager and defenseman Brent Sopel from the defending champion Chicago Blackhawks. He also signed goalie Chris Mason as a free agent to bolster his strength in the crease.

Brashear, who finished last season in the American Hockey League after clearing waivers in February, has been long considered one of the League's toughest and most-feared players. Last season, in 36 games with the Rangers, he had 1 assist and 72 penalty minutes. But the 38-year-old has topped 100 penalties 13 times in a career that began with Montreal in 1995.

Rissmiller, 31, was also in the minors last season, playing the majority of the season with the AHL's Grand Rapids Griffins where he scored 20 goals and 45 points in 63 games. Rissmiller signed a 3-year, $3 million deal with the Rangers in 2008, but has spent just two games with the parent club.

In 182 NHL games, almost all with the San Jose Sharks, Rissmiller has 18 goals and 45 points.

For the Rangers, White is the latest piece of the puzzle as GM Glen Sather tries to put the disappointment of missing the Stanley Cup Playoffs last season in the rear-view mirror.

On July 1, Sather re-signed 20-goal man Vinny Prospal and added backup goalie Martin Biron. He also signed tough guy Derek Boogaard to a long-term deal. He traded for Steve Eminger and Matt McCue before making another big splash last week, signing skilled winger Alexander Frolov to a free-agent deal.
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