As if the Pittsburgh Penguins weren't stacked on offense enough as is, they just made their lineup a bit more intimidating by acquiring Brenden Morrow from the Dallas Stars, as first reported by Darren Dreger. According to ESPN's Pierre LeBrun, Morrow waived his no-trade clause to join the Penguins. Pittsburgh will also receive a third-round pick in 2013 along with Morrow.
Meanwhile, Pittsburgh is sending prospect Joe Morrow and a fifth-round pick in 2013 over to Dallas.
Did the Penguins really need another offensive weapon? Probably not, but the addition of Morrow gives the team additional depth and yet another option if one of their main guns goes down with an injury.
Morrow, 34, is one of the most underrated players in the NHL. He has skated in Dallas since he made his NHL debut back in the 1999-00 season, appearing in 835 games while scoring 243 goals, 285 assists and 528 points. As recently as the 2010-11 season, Morrow chipped in 33 goals. He has since struggled some with injuries, limiting him to 57 games in 2011-12.
In 2013, Morrow has scored six goals in 29 games. His offensive contributions have trailed off, but when he's on, Morrow is still capable of putting the puck in the back of the net or making a key pass to spring an opponent. He might not be the lethal, underrated weapon he once was, but he can still be a contributor – especially in a loaded Pittsburgh lineup.
Morrow had to waive his no-trade clause in order for the deal to go through. It's safe to imagine this was a difficult decision for the forward considering this is his 13th season with the Stars. However, you have to believe Morrow wants the opportunity to hoist the Cup before he calls it a career and he has a much better chance of doing that with the Penguins (1st in the East) than he does with the Stars (8th in the West). He'll be skating with a familiar face as the Penguins acquired his former teammate, James Neal, during the 2010-11 campaign.
Morrow is in the final year of a six-year, $24.6 million contract.
As fellow PDL writer Laura Astorian notes, the Penguins and Stars are developing quite the trade history. Will this deal work out a bit more level than the lopsided James Neal / Matt Niskanen for Alex Goligoski trade? We'll have to wait and see.