West Seneca native Lee Stempniak's time in the desert is over as the right winger was traded Monday by the Phoenix Coyotes to the Calgary Flames for veteran center Daymond Langkow. Stempniak, who will make $1.9 million next year before heading into free agency, signed a two-year deal with Phoenix last summer after there was plenty of chatter from Sabres fans about getting him to sign to return home.
Stempniak had 19 goals and 19 assists while playing all 82 games last season for Phoenix. He was coming off a career year of 28 goals while splitting time with Toronto and the Coyotes in 2009-10.
Langkow, meanwhile, played just four games last year after suffering a severe neck injury in 2010. He carries a $4.5 million cap hit. The NHL-run Coyotes are apparently not afraid of taking on some money as they're up to a team payroll approaching $52 million.