Capitals trade rights to Halak to Islanders

Capitals trade rights to Halak to Islanders
May 1, 2014, 2:30 pm
(Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports)

George McPee may no longer be running the show in D.C but that hasn’t stopped Capitals assistant general manager Brian MacLellan from making his mark.

MacLellan acquired a fourth-round draft pick in the 2014 NHL draft in exchange for the rights to goaltender Jaroslav Halak on Thursday. The fourth-round selection was acquired by the Islanders from the Chicago Blackhawks.

Halak, 28, said after the season that he was open to returning to the Caps, but with him set to become a free agent on July 1 the Caps had an opportunity to trade his rights to a team anxious to replace Evgeny Nabokov between the pipes. The Islanders now have the right to negotiate with Halak before he becomes a free agent on July 1.

The Caps could try the same tactic with Mikhail Grabovski if they believe he will seek to sign elsewhere on July 1.

In 52 games with the St. Louis Blues and Capitals, Halak went 29-13-7 with five shutouts, a 2.25 goals-against average and a .921 save percentage.

He was acquired by the Capitals from Buffalo with a third-round choice in the 2015 NHL draft in exchange for Michal Neuvirth and Rostislav Klesla on March 5, 2014.

Halak has registered a 144-85-29 record in his career with 30 shutouts, a 2.38 goals-against average and a .918 save percentage.