The Nashville Predators acquired forward Cody McLeod in a trade with the Colorado Avalanche for forward Felix Girard on Friday.
McLeod, 32, is in his 10th NHL season, all with the Avalanche. Colorado signed him as a free agent on July 6, 2006. He has a goal and 52 penalty minutes in 28 games this season. Since joining Colorado during the 2007-08 season, he has 117 points (61 goals, 56 assists) and 1,359 penalty minutes in 659 games, and two goals and an assist in 23 Stanley Cup Playoff games.
"I knew Nashville had an interest," Avalanche general manager Joe Sakic said. "I wanted to sit down with Cody. It's a favor for everything he's done. I asked him what he wanted. You think about it, it's Nashville, it's a good opportunity and if that's something that he wanted to do, obviously we know where we're at, we're not going anywhere this year. It took him some time and I'm sure he had some tough decisions, but I got a call from his agent [Thursday] and he said he'd appreciate an opportunity there. For all he's done for our organization, the type of person he is, I wanted to give him an opportunity."
Nashville begins a five-game road trip Saturday at Colorado (3 p.m. ET; ALT, FS-TN, NHL.TV).
"You don't see that too often," Sakic said."But you know what? I think it'll be good. He doesn't have to get on a flight, he's here. I'm sure it will be difficult for him, he's been here his whole career, knows the guys on the team, but it'll be nice for him to have that return right away. It's good, I'm happy for him."
Girard, 22, was selected by the Predators in the fourth round (No. 95) of the 2013 NHL Draft. He is in his third season with Milwaukee of the American Hockey League and has eight points (three goals) and 29 penalty minutes in 35 games. He was assigned to San Antonio of the AHL.
"He plays with some grit and leadership," Sakic said of Girard. "He's a former captain, so he will bring some leadership to our young guys down there."