The Western Conference leading Nashville Predators acquired defenseman Cody Franson and forward Mike Santorelli from the Toronto Maple Leafs in exchange for Nashville’s first-round selection in the 2015 Draft, and forwards Brendan Leipsic and Olli Jokinen.
Franson the top available defenseman on the market, gives Nashville another blueliner who can play in all situations, while Santorelli adds scoring depth to a well rounded group that lacks a superstar forward but is a balanced two-way group.
Nashville leads the NHL with 82 points and jumped ahead of other contenders in the West who had been chasing Franson like the Anaheim Ducks.
The Penguins had been in the mix for Franson but Pittsburgh’s focus has been more on Edmonton’s Jeff Petry and others.