NHL

Penguins acquire Phil Kessel from Maple Leafs as part of blockbuster trade

  • FILE - In this Dec. 13, 2014, file photo, Toronto Maple Leafs' Phil Kessel skates during second period NHL hockey action against the Detroit Red Wings in Toronto. The Maple Leafs sent 27-year-old Kessel to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Wednesday, July 1, 2015, in a blockbuster deal that gives the Penguins a needed boost in its top six and gives the Maple Leafs some flexibility as they begin to retool under new coach Mike Babcock. (Chris Young/The Canadian Press via AP, File)

    FILE - In this Dec. 13, 2014, file photo, Toronto Maple Leafs' Phil Kessel skates during second period NHL hockey action against the Detroit Red Wings in Toronto. The Maple Leafs sent 27-year-old Kessel to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Wednesday, July 1, 2015, in a blockbuster deal that gives the Penguins a needed boost in its top six and gives the Maple Leafs some flexibility as they begin to retool under new coach Mike Babcock. (Chris Young/The Canadian Press via AP, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this Feb. 21, 2015, file photo, Toronto Maple Leafs' Phil Kessel, second from left, skates past Winnipeg Jets' Toby Enstrom, second from right, and Maple Leafs teammates Tyler Bozak, left, and Morgan Rielly during overtime NHL hockey action in Toronto. The Maple Leafs sent 27-year-old Kessel to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Wednesday, July 1, 2015, in a blockbuster deal that gives the Penguins a needed boost in its top six and gives the Maple Leafs some flexibility as they begin to retool under new coach Mike Babcock. (Darren Calabrese/The Canadian Press via AP, File)

    FILE - In this Feb. 21, 2015, file photo, Toronto Maple Leafs' Phil Kessel, second from left, skates past Winnipeg Jets' Toby Enstrom, second from right, and Maple Leafs teammates Tyler Bozak, left, and Morgan Rielly during overtime NHL hockey action in Toronto. The Maple Leafs sent 27-year-old Kessel to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Wednesday, July 1, 2015, in a blockbuster deal that gives the Penguins a needed boost in its top six and gives the Maple Leafs some flexibility as they begin to retool under new coach Mike Babcock. (Darren Calabrese/The Canadian Press via AP, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this Sept. 18, 2014, file photo, Toronto Maple Leafs' Phil Kessel pauses during a photo shoot at training camp in Toronto. The Maple Leafs sent 27-year-old Kessel to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Wednesday, July 1, 2015, in a blockbuster deal that gives the Penguins a needed boost in its top six and gives the Maple Leafs some flexibility as they begin to retool under new coach Mike Babcock. (Chris Young/The Canadian Press via AP, File)

    FILE - In this Sept. 18, 2014, file photo, Toronto Maple Leafs' Phil Kessel pauses during a photo shoot at training camp in Toronto. The Maple Leafs sent 27-year-old Kessel to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Wednesday, July 1, 2015, in a blockbuster deal that gives the Penguins a needed boost in its top six and gives the Maple Leafs some flexibility as they begin to retool under new coach Mike Babcock. (Chris Young/The Canadian Press via AP, File)  (The Associated Press)

The Pittsburgh Penguins gave stars Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin some help, acquiring Phil Kessel from Toronto on Wednesday.

Pittsburgh sent forward Nick Spaling, defenseman Scott Harrington, former first-round pick Kasperi Kapanen and a draft pick to the Maple Leafs for Kessel, defenseman Tim Erixon, forward Tyler Biggs with other conditional picks involved.

The 27-year-old Kessel has 181 goals and 213 assists in nine seasons between Boston and Toronto. Kessel finished with 25 goals and 36 assists for the Maple Leafs in 2014-15. The Penguins were in search of a top-six forward to help take some of the scoring burden off Crosby and Malkin.

Kapanen, taken with the 22nd overall pick in the 2014 draft, was considered one of the top forward prospects in the Penguins' organization.