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Thrashers deal Williams to Columbus

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Atlanta Thrashers General Manager Don Waddell has been a very busy man this week.

Waddell announced his third transaction in five days Wednesday when he traded center Jason Williams to the Columbus Blue Jackets in exchange for defenseman Clay Wilson and San Jose's sixth-round selection in the 2009 Entry Draft -- a pick previously acquired by Columbus.

The 25-year-old Wilson, a native of Sturgeon Lake, Minn., had 1 assist in five games with Columbus this season. Williams, who was signed by the Thrashers as a free agent in July, had 7 goals, 18 points and a minus-9 rating through 41 games in 2008-09.

The addition of Williams by Columbus comes two days after the Jackets placed All-Star wing Rick Nash on injured reserve retroactive to Jan. 6. Nash would be eligible to return to the lineup Friday against the New Jersey Devils. Columbus currently has five forwards on IR, including Derick Brassard, Jason Chimera, Jiri Novotny, Raffi Torres and Nash.

On Saturday, Waddell acquired 26-year-old forward Rich Peverly off waivers from the Nashville Predators and on Tuesday he dealt forward Junior Lessard to the New York Islanders for 25-year-old defenseman Brett Skinner.

Peverley, who is expected to make his Atlanta debut alongside captain Ilya Kovalchuk Wednesday against the Ottawa Senators, had appeared in 27 games this season with Nashville, recording nine points (2 goals, 7 assists). He earned a season-high 2 assists on Oct. 15 at Dallas and posted a three-game point streak from Oct. 15-18, posting four points (1 goal, 3 assists) during that span.

Skinner has recorded four penalty minutes in 11 games with the Islanders this season, while posting 12 points (1 goal, 11 assists) in 24 games with the Bridgeport Sound Tigers of the American Hockey League.

Waddell is no doubt looking to fortify his defense, which is currently allowing a League-high 3.65 goals per game. Rookie defenseman Zach Bogosian was recalled from the team's American Hockey League affiliate, the Chicago Wolves. Bogosian appeared in five games with the Wolves after being assigned for conditioning on Jan. 3.
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