The New York Islanders
on Tuesday claimed forward Michael Grabner
on waivers from the Florida Panthers
and waived forward Andy Hilbert
The Panthers had acquired Grabner as part of a trade with Vancouver at the Entry Draft in June. The 23-year-old Austrian native was taken with the 14th pick in the 2006 Entry Draft by the Canucks. He had 68 goals and 52 assists in 180 games for the Canucks' AHL farm team, the Manitoba Moose. He also played 20 games with the Canucks last season, scoring 5 goals and adding 6 assists.
"Michael is a former first-round selection and a talented winger who has tremendous offensive ability," Islanders General Manager Garth Snow
said of the 6-foot, 170-pound right wing.
Hilbert, 29, spent three seasons with the Islanders from 2006-09, putting up 24 goals and 47 assists in 218 games, before signing with Minnesota last summer. He was scoreless in four games with the Wild in 2009-10 before being sent to AHL Houston, where he had 9 goals and 16 assists in 33 games. He signed a two-way deal with the Islanders during the summer and is likely headed for Bridgeport of the AHL if he clears waivers.
The Islanders are without two of their most skilled forwards, Kyle Okposo
(shoulder surgery) and Rob Schremp
(back) as they prepare for their season-opener against Dallas at home on Saturday night. They are also without their best defenseman, Mark Streit
, who had shoulder surgery last week and is expected to miss 4-6 months.