The Montreal Canadiens acquired veteran center Eric Staal from the Buffalo Sabres on Friday in exchange for third- and fifth-round picks in the 2021 NHL Draft, the team announced.
Buffalo will retain $1.625 million of Staal’s salary.
The Minnesota Wild traded Staal to the Sabres in September in exchange for Marcus Johansson. In 32 games with the franchise, the 36-year-old notched three goals and 10 points.
The Ontario native spent much of his career with the Carolina Hurricanes, helping the franchise win the Stanley Cup in 2006. He spent four seasons with the Wild and also played for the New York Rangers for part of the 2015-16 season.
In 1,272 games, Staal has 439 goals and 592 assists for 1,031 points. He is the highest-scoring Staal brother, with Jordan and Marc well behind his 1,000-plus points. His other brother, Jared, appeared in only two NHL games.
Staal will now have the chance to take the ice for a playoff contender. The Canadiens are fourth in the North Division with a 14-8-9 record. The Sabres, meanwhile, have no shot at the playoffs with just six wins this season.