Thrashers, Bruins swap four players

Sports Network

, Last Updated: 3:05 PM ET

ATLANTA, Ga. -- The Atlanta Thrashers and Boston Bruins worked a deal involving four players on Friday.

Heading to Georgia were forward Blake Wheeler and defenseman Mark Stuart, while forward Rich Peverley and defenseman Boris Valabik were shipped to Beantown.

"This deal improves our hockey club in both the short and long-term," said Thrashers general manager Rick Dudley. "With Blake Wheeler, we are getting a versatile two-way forward, and Mark Stuart will help anchor our already strong group of defensemen as we make a push toward the playoffs."

The 24-year-old Wheeler contributed 11 goals and 27 points in 58 games for the Northeast Division leaders this season. Over 221 NHL games over the last three years, he has compiled 50 goals and 110 points.

Stuart has been limited to 31 games this season, thanks to a broken bone in his right hand suffered in early December. The 26-year-old posted just one goal and five points this year with Boston.

Peverley has been a solid two-way forward for Atlanta for the past two-plus seasons. The 28-year-old notched 14 goals and 34 points despite a minus-16 rating in 59 games with the Thrashers in 2010-11.

Since breaking in with Nashville for the 2006-07 campaign, he has posted 56 goals and 144 points in 253 career contests.

Valabik has yet to play in the NHL this season. The native of Slovakia tallied nine assists in 49 games with Atlanta's AHL affiliate, the Chicago Wolves. A former 2004 first-round pick of the Thrashers in 2004, Valabik has largely been a spare blueliner, tallying only seven assists in 80 NHL appearances.


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