The Carolina Hurricanes attempted to address one of their needs, scoring depth, when they traded with Tampa Bay for Jussi Jokinen today. The Canes gave up Wade Brookbank, Josef Melichar, and a fourth round draft pick for the Finnish forward.
Jokinen is expected to play tonight in Phoenix.
The Canes will take on a bit more salary with the deal as Brookbank and Melichar earned 1.475 million combined, while Jokinen has a salary of 1.875 million. Melichar was sent to Albany and Brookbank hadn't played in weeks, so the move does not adversely affect the current Hurricanes lineup.
At one time, Jokinen was known as being one of the top shootout performers in the league. He was originally drafted by Dallas, but was sent to Tampa Bay last year in the Brad Richards deal. He has scored 53 goals and has 161 points in 281 career NHL games.
Discounting the extra salary, the move is a good one for the Canes in that they gave up two players whom the organization had given up on. But it does leave the team without a bonafide "enforcer". Melichar and Brookbank will be unrestricted free agents at the end of the year while Jokinen is restricted. Jussi could have been picked up on the waiver wire a bit earlier, but this way the Canes dump two dead contracts of their own.
It's interesting that the team now has three players from Finland, Ruutu, Pitkanen, and now Jokinen.