According to TSN, the Capitals have acquired defenseman Dennis Wideman from the Florida Panthers in exchange for prospect Jake Hauswirth and a 2011 3rd round draft pick. With the status of defenseman Tom Poti still uncertain, George McPhee added a veteran defenseman capable of playing both special teams.
Wideman is in his 6th NHL season and has posted 9 goals and 33 points in 61 games for the Panthers this season. The 6′, 200-lb Ontario native is a right handed shot, bringing balance to the Caps’ blueline. He averages nearly 24 minutes of ice-time per night. He has played 439 career NHL games for the S. Louis Blues, Boston Bruins, and Florida Panthers, posting 55 goals and 198 points. He has also played in 30 playoff games for the Bruins, posting 1 goal and 22 points.
With the Caps powerplay struggling, Wideman brings an excellent skill set. He is a good passer and shooter. Eight of his 9 goals and 11 of his 24 assists have come on the powerplay this season. His career high in points came in 2008-09 when he scored 13 goals and 50 points.
Wideman carries an annual salary cap hit of $3,937,500, and he is signed for one more season. With Tom Poti’s $3.5 million on long-term injured reserve, the Capitals might not be done.
In return, the Caps give up Jake Hauswirth, a project who is currently playing for South Carolina in the ECHL. The Capitals are now without their 2nd and 3rd round picks in the 2011 Entry Draft.