MONTREAL (AP) - The Calgary Flames have acquired smooth-skating defenseman Jay Bouwmeester just four days before he is eligible to become an unrestricted free agent.
The Flames sent defenseman Jordan Leopold and a third-round pick in Saturday's NHL entry draft to the Florida Panthers to complete the deal.
The trade gives Calgary a window of exclusivity in negotiating a new contract with Bouwmeester and his agent, Bryon Baltimore. Bouwmeester can become a free agent on Wednesday.
A 6-foot-4, 214-pound native of Edmonton, the 25-year-old Bouwmeester has spent his entire career with Florida, which drafted him third overall in 2002.
Bouwmeester had 15 goals and 27 assists last season.
Leopold also is eligible for free agency next week.