The Sabres officially have announced they acquired right wing Steve Bernier and a first-round pick from the San Jose Sharks in exchange for Brian Campbell and a seventh-round pick.
Bernier was a first-round pick by the Sharks in the 2003 draft, No. 16 overall. He has 13 goals and 10 assists in 59 games for the Sharks.
Bernier, a 6-foot-2, 225-pounder, had played on the second line with Sharks center Patrick Marleau. The winger had struggled of late. He hasn't scored in 12 games, part of a team-wide problem that forced the team to look for offense. Campbell is expected to provide that, especially as the point man on the power play.
"Steve Bernier addressed an immediate need and a future need," Sabres General Manager Darcy Regier said. "He's a young player who will be able to help us now and down the road."
Bernier, who turns 23 at the end of March, had an outstanding junior career. He scored at least 31 goals all four years, led by a career-high 49.
Regier said it became clear in the past few days a deal would not be reached with Campbell and a trade was the best option.
"We would all preferred to have him or keep him here," Regier said. "But this is part of the new CBA we have to deal with.
"It's unfortunate for the fans."
Campbell spent eight seasons with the Sabres, and he was informed of the trade by Regier and coach Lindy Ruff.
"Lindy and I met with him and thanked him," Regier said. "There's a lot of respect and that will continue."
"We've been talking contract for a long time. It's the process that played out.
"It is [sad]," Regier said. "I think it's a very sad day. These guys start as draft picks, and 10 years later you get to know them and they're part of the team."
taggedNHL trade deadline