Senators acquire Cullen from Hurricanes

It was a busy morning for general manager Bryan Murray in Ottawa.

Fresh off the news of his one-year contract extension, Murray and the Ottawa Senators added forward Matt Cullen from the Carolina Hurricanes for defenceman Alexandre Picard and a second-round draft pick. 

Cullen, who has 12 goals and 28 assists in 60 games played this season, could be a boost to the Senators 27th ranked power-play, as he spent time in Carolina playing at the point on their power-play unit.

"He's a hardworking guy, versatile, he can play centre, wing, he can kill penalties and play the point on the powerplay," said Murray of Cullen. "He's got some skill, he's got good effort, and he's a real good character guy."

"He's an exciting player and he definitely adds to our depth, and it's always a good sign when they add players to your team at this time of year," noted Senators forward Jason Spezza.

Murray also discussed the departure of Picard from the Senators' blueline.

"Losing Alex in this deal is sort of what we had to do from a budget point of view, as well as what Carolina wanted," explained Murray. "We'll bring up a couple of young guys for the two games on the weekend, and then hopefully Carlson will get healthy right after the Olympic break. Maybe we can address that issue also with another defenceman at the deadline."

The Hurricanes were pleased to pick up Picard, who is likely to get more ice-time in Carolina than he did in Ottawa.

"Alexandre is a good, young defenceman who should become a regular part of the Hurricanes' blueline," Carolina general manager Jim Rutherford said in a statement. "We wish Matt all the best, and thank him for his many years here in Carolina."

Murray also said on Friday that the club would not be trading Anton Volchenkov, who will become an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season, and indicated that the club had already made the defenceman a contract offer. 

The 33-year old Cullen, who won a Stanley Cup with the Hurricanes in 2005-06, has 165 goals and 288 assists in 859 games played.

The 24-year old Picard has four goals and 11 assists in 45 games this season.  In 184 career NHL games, Picard has scored 16 goals and added 41 assists.