Defenseman Kimmo Timonen, who has not played this season, was traded to the Chicago Blackhawks by the Philadelphia Flyers on Friday.
Timonen, who will turn 40 on March 18, was diagnosed with blood clots in his leg and lungs in August. He's been skating on his own Feb. 6 and had been practicing with the Flyers since Feb. 17.
"My only goal is to win the [Stanley] Cup," Timonen said after the trade. "This isn't about money or anything else. I had a good seven years with the Flyers; I always thought I would retire here but this is the right move."
Philadelphia receives a second-round pick in the 2015 NHL Draft and a conditional fourth-round pick in the 2016 draft. If the Blackhawks win two playoff rounds and Timonen plays in at least 50 percent of the games, the fourth-round pick becomes a third-round pick in 2016.
"We've been working on this one for a while," Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman said. "He was the defenseman we really wanted. He's been a high-level defenseman for a long time."
Timonen has not played since April 30, 2014, a Stanley Cup Playoff game against the New York Rangers.
"He's had the blood issue, but we're past that," Bowman said. "He didn't hurt his knee or his shoulder or something. Obviously he's going to be a little rusty, but I think he's ready to play some games."
Timonen signed a one-year contract worth $2 million this summer when he expected the Flyers to be a contender. Philadelphia is six points behind the Boston Bruins for the second wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Eastern Conference, having played one more game.
Timonen has played 1,079 games for the Flyers and Nashville Predators. He has 117 goals and 454 assists (571 points).
"He is going to give up a lot of options, versatility and leadership," Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said. "And we'll get him going. I think we're happy with the move; you can never have enough defense in this league. He's been around the conference, knows the conference, so it's a nice fit for us."
Timonen has said that no matter what happens going forward, this will be his last season, and that is why he pushed himself to return.
"Last summer I got sick and I was in Finland in a hospital bed and I realized how serious it was," Timonen said. "So I said if I returned to hockey I wanted a Stanley Cup. That was my only goal if I returned to hockey. The only thing missing from my career is a Stanley Cup."
Timonen said he will join the Blackhawks on Saturday and practice Sunday with hopes of playing against the Carolina Hurricanes on Monday. Quenneville said he is planning to use Timonen right away.
"Playing the game is when you get your timing and your instincts start taking over," Timonen said. "You can't simulate that in practice. It's going to take a few games but I'm sure I can help the team when I get into top shape."
The Blackhawks, who lost at the Tampa Bay Lightning 4-0 on Friday, placed defenseman Johnny Oduya (upper body) on injured reserve.
"Obviously [Kimmo has] had a pretty great career; he hasn't played a whole lot this year but he's a smart defenseman," Keith said. "Anytime you can add a guy like that with experience I think it's going to help. We're excited to have him, if that's the case."
With wing Patrick Kane expected to miss 12 weeks recovering from a fractured left clavicle, the Blackhawks will continue to search for deals before the NHL Trade Deadline on Monday.
"We're not done making calls; it's been a long day today and I'm sure it will be the same tomorrow and the next couple of days," Bowman said. "We can't predict if a deal will be made, but we're going to keep trying. We're still looking for forwards; hopefully it works out."