Deals On Deadline

Mar 9, 2004

NHL teams

The Colorado Avalanche were the busiest team on the NHL trade deadline Tuesday by pulling three major deals.

The Avs acquired center Chris Gratton and defenseman Ossi Vaananen from the Phoenix Coyotes for defensemen Derek Morris and Keith Ballard.

"We are pleased to add two quality players to our roster," Avalanche president and general manager Pierre Lacroix said. "Both are young, talented players who have performed at this level for years and will add size and experience at both ends of the ice."

Colorado also added goaltender Tommy Salo from the Edmonton Oilers for defenseman Tom Gilbert and winger Matthew Barnaby from the New York Rangers for defensemen Chris McAllister and David Liffiton.

Leafs Get Francis
The Toronto Maple Leafs landed 41-year-old center Ron Francis, who ranks fourth in NHL history in career points and second in assists, after he waived a no-trade clause in his contract.

"Certainly, they've got a good team and hopefully I can find a little niche to sort of help them out," Francis said. "I certainly know a lot about that organization and I'm looking forward to trying to help them."

"Every kid grows up dreaming of playing for them," Francis said of the Leafs.

Sens Beef Up Defense
The New York Rangers continued their massive overhaul by trading defenseman Greg De Vries to the Ottawa Senators for defenseman Karel Rachunek and prospect Alexandre Giroux.

The Rangers also sent Martin Rucinsky to the Vancouver Canucks for defenseman Martin Grenier.

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