Canadiens, Stars swap veteran forwards

The Montreal Canadiens and Dallas Stars exchanged a pair of skilled forwards on Tuesday, with Michael Ryder going back to the Habs for Erik Cole.

Also heading to Montreal is a third-round draft pick in 2013.

"Erik Cole is a top-six power forward who skates well, adds size, and is under contract for the next two years," said Dallas Stars general manager Joe Nieuwendyk. "We thank Michael Ryder for his contributions and look forward to what Erik will bring to our group."

After signing a four-year free agent deal with Montreal in July of 2011, Cole pumped home a career-best 35 goals along with 61 points last season. He has totaled three goals and three assists in 19 games for the Northeast Division leaders this season.

Cole, 34, has participated in 721 games for the Hurricanes, Oilers and Canadiens since 2001, picking up 222 scores and 235 assists.

The 32-year-old Ryder recorded six goals and 14 points with a plus-four in 19 games for Dallas thus far in 2013. A native of Newfoundland, Ryder skated for the Canadiens from 2003-08, racking up 99 goals and 207 points in 314 games.

In 650 NHL games with the Habs, Bruins and Stars, Ryder has compiled 203 goals and 410 points.