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Capitals acquire goalie Halak for Neuvirth

by Adam Kimelman

PHILADELPHIA -- The Washington Capitals on Wednesday acquired goaltender Jaroslav Halak and a third-round pick in the 2015 NHL Draft from the Buffalo Sabres in a trade for goaltender Michal Neuvirth and defenseman Rostislav Klesla.

Halak joined the Sabres on Friday as part of the trade that sent Ryan Miller and Steve Ott to the St. Louis Blues. Halak leaves Buffalo without playing a game for the Sabres; he was the backup to Jhonas Enroth on Monday against the Dallas Stars.

In 40 games this season, Halak is 24-9-4 with a 2.23 goals-against average and .917 save percentage. He can be an unrestricted free agent after the season.

Halak, 28, has a history with the Capitals. In the first round of the 2010 Stanley Cup Playoffs he was the goalie for the eighth-seeded Montreal Canadiens in a seven-game upset of top-seeded Washington, ending the club's Stanley Cup hopes after a Presidents' Trophy-winning season. He allowed three goals on 124 shots in the final three games of the series.

A 2003 ninth-round pick of the Canadiens, Halak has 139 wins and 26 shutouts in 260 NHL games with the Canadiens and Blues.

Neuvirth, 25, is 4-6-2 with a 2.82 GAA and .914 save percentage in 13 games this season. A 2006 second-round pick (No. 34), Neuvirth has a record of 59-41-13 in 134 games, all with the Capitals.

Neuvirth was scheduled to back up starter Braden Holtby on Wednesday against the Philadelphia Flyers (8 p.m. ET, NBCSN, TSN2).

The Capitals acquired Klesla on Tuesday from the Phoenix Coyotes as part of the Martin Erat trade. The 31-year-old had one goal and three assists in 25 games with the Coyotes.


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