C Vaclav Prospal ($2.5m, 1 year)
D Adrian Aucoin ($2.25m, 1 year)
D Keith Ballard ($4.2m, 3 years)
LW Bill Sweatt ($.900k, 1 year)*
Draft Pick: 3rd Round 2013 (VAN)
Total: $4.2m, 3 years
*Bill Sweatt salary does not effect cap
Breakdown & Analysis
The Canucks acquire two UFA contracts that expire at the end of the season while shipping out Ballard's troublesome multi-year deal. Furthermore, the Canucks gain valuable veteran experience and fill the gap left by Kesler's injury absence down the middle.
Adrian Aucoin returns in a Vancouver uniform and can play third pair minutes with ample time on the powerplay. Not expected to re-sign after the end of his contract, Aucoin can also teach youngster Chris Tanev how to play smart and can contribute the occasional goal.
Vinny Prospal has 10 points in 20 games this season for the Jackets and is likely to hit the trade market this deadline. The 38-year old is a pass-first center with a knack for timely goals. In 65 career playoffs games, Prospal has 10 goals and 35 points.
The Blue Jackets shore up their defense by acquiring Keith Ballard who could step into a top-4 position rightaway. Ballard's trade value is low but his value to the Jackets could be significantly higher. Paired with Jack Johnson, the two could mesh well and provide a dangerous combination of size, speed and skill in front of Mason/Bobrovsky.
Columbus also acquires Bill Sweatt's contract; the 23-year old suited up in two NHL games with the Canucks last season (0-0-0 pts) and has 20 points in 42 games with the Chicago Wolves this season. Sweatt is a low-risk acquisition for the Jackets who could use him rightaway with their younger players. His speed could pair well with Derrick Brassard, assuming the latter isn't moved this year. While Sweatt never had the opportunity to crack a talented and deep Canucks forward lineup, he could make an impact for the Jackets.
The Canucks also trade their third round draft pick to Columbus in this year's draft. This pick has already moved around a couple of times, with Vancouver trading and reacquiring the pick from Florida in the Samuelsson/Booth trade.