Canucks get Lapierre from Ducks and Higgins from Panthers Staff

2/28/2011 8:41:38 PM

The Vancouver Canucks made a pair of moves to add depth at the forward position on Monday, acquiring Max Lapierre and MacGregor Sharp from the Anaheim Ducks, as well as Chris Higgins from the Florida Panthers.

The exchange for Lapierre and Sharp is forward Joel Perrault and a third-round pick in 2011, while the Higgins' deal has defenceman Evan Oberg and a third-round pick in 2011 going to the Panthers.

"I think we made our team a little bit better today," said general manager Mike Gillis. "You have to try and do that. I think we added experience and we added a little bit of a different element than we posses on this team currently.
"With Chris Higgins we have a player that can move up and down the lineup. With Maxim Lapierre we have a third-line/fourth-line player that can play with some grit and sandpaper and add a dimension that we don't currently have."

Lapierre, 25, has split the 2010-11 season between Montreal and Anaheim. He's appeared in 21 games for the Ducks this season, recording three assists and nine penalty minutes and collected five goals and three assists and 63 penalty minutes in 38 games with the Canadiens.

The Saint-Leonard, Quebec native has played in 314 career games, recording 40 goals and 43 assists with 293 penalty minutes with Anaheim and Montreal. He has also played in 35 playoff games, collecting three goals and four assists and 20 penalty minutes in three post-season appearances with Montreal.

"That's my type of game," Lapierre said during a telephone conference call. "I am a playoff type of guy.

"I'm a good skater. I'm a hard worker. I keep things simple on the ice. I can score some big goals once in a while."

Lapierre was originally drafted 61st overall in the second round of the 2003 NHL Entry Draft by the Canadiens.

Sharp, 25, has appeared in 50 games this season with the Ducks' AHL affiliate, the Syracuse Crunch. The Red Deer, Alberta native has recorded six goals and seven assists and 26 penalty minutes in the 2010-11 season with the Crunch. The 6'1", 180-pound centre has played in eight NHL games with Anaheim.

Higgins, 27, is a seven year veteran who's spent time with the Montreal Canadiens, New York Rangers, Calgary Flames and Panthers. In 397 career NHL games, the Smithtown, NY, native has 103 goals and 88 assists with 138 penalty minutes.

Higgins was drafted by the Canadiens in the first round (14th overall) of the 2002 NHL Entry Draft.

Perrault has spent most of his time this season with Vancouver's AHL affiliate in Manitoba, registering three goals and 15 assists in 26 games with the Moose. He was scoreless in seven games with the Canucks this year and has 12 goals and 14 assists in 96 career tilts at the NHL level.

Oberg, 23, has played in two games with Vancouver this season and has yet to register a point in four career NHL contests. He has seven goals and four assists in 38 games this year for Manitoba.