Sunrise, FL (SportsNetwork.com) - The Florida Panthers have traded forward Tomas Fleischmann to the Anaheim Ducks in exchange for fallen star Dany Heatley and a 2015 third-round draft choice.
Fleischmann, in the final season of a four-year, $18 million contract he signed with the Panthers in July of 2011, owns 567 regular-season games and 29 playoff contests of experience, though his production has declined in each of the past two campaigns.
The 30-year-old posted career bests of 27 goals and 61 points during his first season in Florida in 2011-12, but has recorded just 27 goals total over three seasons since. In 52 games in 2014-15, Fleischmann has seven goals and 14 assists, though his plus-12 rating was the best on the team.
He joins a Ducks team that currently owns a 12-point lead in the Pacific Division and is four points back of Nashville for the top seed in the Western Conference.
Heatley's career has undergone an even greater downturn than Fleischmann's. The 2002 Calder Trophy recipient had back-to-back 50-goal seasons with the Ottawa Senators in 2005-06 and 2006-07, then had at least 39 in each of the next three seasons -- two with the Senators and the last with the San Jose Sharks.
The five-time All-Star has spent the majority of this season in the minors, however, and managed just two goals in 25 games with the Ducks' American Hockey League affiliate in Norfolk. The Panthers will assign Heatley to AHL San Antonio.
Florida, which trails Boston by four points for the final playoff spot in the East and recently acquired veteran forward Jaromir Jagr from New Jersey for the stretch drive, made a few other roster moves prior to Saturday's game against Buffalo.
The Panthers activated forward Brandon Pirri from injured reserve, placed forward Dave Bolland on IR and assigned forward Garrett Wilson to San Antonio.
Pirri, who has tallied nine goals in 28 games this season, had been sidelined since Feb. 10 by an upper-body injury. Bolland has not played since Feb. 21 due to an upper-body issue as well.