Senators acquire Stillman and Commodore Staff

2/11/2008 9:21:40 PM

The Ottawa Senators have shuffled the deck in a big way by completing a four-player transaction with the Carolina Hurricanes.

The Senators have acquired defenceman Mike Commodore and forward Cory Stillman in exchange for defenceman Joe Corvo and forward Patrick Eaves.

Commodore and Stillman are scheduled to become unrestricted free agents on July 1. Stillman had to agree to waive his no-trade clause to go to Ottawa.

The acquisition of Stillman should give the Senators secondary scoring a boost.  The team struggled mightily recently when both Daniel Alfredsson and Dany Heatley missed time due to injuries.

"When you look at our lineup on Saturday night, those three guys pretty much got all the points," Murray told the CANADIAN PRESS when discussing Saturday's victory over Montreal. "You can't have that. When you get the shutdown guys on you and you can't get secondary scoring, then you have a real problem. I think Cory brings credentials and smarts around the net that will help us."

"We're very happy to address one of our needs, making our defence more mobile and adding a player like Joe that can play on the power play," Rutherford told The Canadian Press. "Also, we view Patrick as a real character player, a real good young player that can fit into our style of play.

"With that being said, it's very tough to say goodbye to guys that we part of winning a championship and Cory and Mike were true professionals and were a big part of us winning the Stanley Cup (in 2006). So this is a tough deal, but one that's necessary."

Eaves is a restricted free agent at the end of this season. Corvo has two years remaining on his contract, paying him $2.75 million per year but with a salary cap hit of $2.625 million.

Eaves missed the last 6 games with a neck shoulder injury and missed 24 games earlier with a separated shoulder. He had just begun to start skating with the team.

Stillman is enjoying a very productive season with Carolina as he has 21 goals and 25 assists in 55 games.  He has cooled considerably after a hot start to the season as he has only seven points in the 2008 calendar year.

He enjoyed his best season in 2003-04 with the Lightning when he scored 25 goals and added 55 assists.  In 815 career games the 34-year old Stillman has scored 231 times while handing out 352 assists.

He is a two time Stanley Cup winner in 2004 with Tampa Bay and in 2006 with the Hurricanes.

Meanwhile Commodore has three goals and nine assists and 74 penalty minutes in 41 games.  He was also a member of the 2006 Stanley Cup winning Hurricanes.

Commodore is expected to add some much needed muscle to the Senators blueline who were pushed around by the Anaheim Ducks in last year's Stanley Cup Final.

"He's been there, he's a rambunctious type of guy, he's a battler," said Murray. "I thought we had some holes on our defence without the puck and I think Mike helps address that. Energy and size and grit are what we're hoping to add here. He's just a competitive person."

In 51 games with the Senators this season the 30-year old Corvo has six goals and 21 assists while sporting a +13 rating.  He has also been playing on the Senators top power play unit and will likely be asked to quarterback the Hurricanes struggling PP unit which is 17th in the league.  Corvo had also earned the nickname "Uh Oh Joe" from many Senators fans for Corvo's ability to turnover the puck at the most inopportune moments.In 330 career games he has 41 goals and 100 assists.

While struggling to overcome a shoulder injury this season, the 23-year old Eaves has four goals and six assists.

Both Stillman and Commodore are expected to arrive in Ottawa on Tuesday at 10:30am et and are expected to be in the lineup when the Senators play host to the Sabres.  The Hurricanes face the Bruins on Tuesday as well, however  it is unknown if Corvo and Eaves will be in the lineup for their new team at this time.