The Pittsburgh Penguins acquired forward David Perron from the Edmonton Oilers on Friday in exchange for forward Rob Klinkhammer and a first-round pick in the 2015 NHL Draft.
Perron, 26, has five goals and 19 points in 38 games, one season after he set career highs with 28 goals, 57 points and eight power-play goals. The 26th pick in the 2007 NHL Draft by the St. Louis Blues, he has 117 goals and 274 points in 456 games with the Blues and Oilers.
"It's always hard leaving a place where you're emotionally involved, no matter how tough the situation was here. Once you look past that, there's not many better opportunities to go to and I'm really excited about that," Perron said.
Perron leaves an Oilers team that is tied for the fewest points in the NHL at 24 and joins the Penguins, who are tied for first place in the Metropolitan Division, one point off the Eastern Conference lead.
"He's a great teammate, a great guy in the room, so we're going to miss him," Oilers forward Matt Hendricks said. "He's got a good opportunity now."
Klinkhammer, 28, has four goals and six points in 29 games for the Penguins and Arizona Coyotes, where he began the season. He has 20 goals and 39 points in 139 games for the Chicago Blackhawks, Ottawa Senators, Coyotes and Penguins.
He won't be in the lineup Friday when the Oilers play at the Colorado Avalanche, instead flying straight to Edmonton according to the Edmonton Sun.
"They're having kind of a tough year and nobody ever likes that, it's not fun when you're struggling," Klinkhammer said. "I've just got to come in and play my game, which is a big, strong, physical game. It's really simple and hopefully I can help the boys out there to get things turned around."
Perron won't be in the lineup either Friday when the Penguins host the Tampa Bay Lightning, but he could play Saturday against the Montreal Canadiens.
"At the stage I'm at in my career, I think the first few years you're just happy to be in the League and to get more ice time and more opportunities. After a few years you just want to win," he said. "Obviously it's not going to happen this year in Edmonton. It's nice to get an opportunity in Pittsburgh and to have that kind of trust they did to acquire me."
Perron had kind words for the Oilers, who acquired him from the Blues in July 2013 for forward Magnus Paajarvi and a second-round pick.
"(The Oilers are) a class organization. All the way through, even in tough times, I met nice people -- trainers and team staff and players and the people of Edmonton. It was great, but it's a new chapter for me. I have a chance to hopefully go really deep in the playoffs," Perron said.
Oilers interim coach Todd Nelson said the Penguins are getting a character player in Perron.
"The time I had to work with David was a pleasure," Nelson said. "He's a hard-working guy that goes to the gritty areas. It's a great opportunity for him. He's going to a team that's had success."