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Arizona Coyotes trade Anthony Duclair to Chicago Blackhawks

Arizona Coyotes left wing Anthony Duclair (10) in the first period during an NHL hockey game against the Pittsburgh Penguins, Saturday, Dec 16, 2017, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)

The Arizona Coyotes have traded forward Anthony Duclair and defenseman Adam Clendening to the Chicago Blackhawks for forward Richard Panik and prospect Laurent Dauphin, the team announced Wednesday as reported by 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station’s John Gambadoro.

Duclair had been a hot topic of discussions surrounding the Coyotes this season, a season in which the 22-year-old had played in only 33 of the Coyotes’ 43 games but was fourth on the team in goals. Having been scratched several times throughout the year, his name most recently appeared in headlines when it was reported that he had requested a trade.

Evidently, the feeling was mutual.

“This has gone back for a few years now where the team wasn’t particularly happy with the player and the player wasn’t particularly happy with the team,” Coyotes general manager John Chayka said. “It was probably best to change the scenery for both sides.”

The Coyotes acquired Duclair from the Rangers in March of 2015 in a trade that included defenseman Keith Yandle. In three seasons since then, the Quebec native played 172 games for Arizona, scoring 34 goals with 40 assists.

“There’s a lot of things that go into a trade, some of them are readily apparent,” Chayka said. “You see Anthony play, his speed and skill is obvious to everyone. There’s some things that I think can stay behind closed doors.”

Duclair is a pending restricted free agent. He is on a one-year deal with a cap hit of $1.2 million.

Meanwhile, the 26-year-old Panik has played his last three seasons in Chicago. This season, Panik has six goals and 16 points in 37 games. In 2009, Panik was selected 52nd overall in the second round by the Tampa Bay Lightning.

“Richard Panik is a big, skilled winger who is an excellent goal scorer,” Chayka stated in a press release. “He’s also a strong two-way forward with great speed and provides a veteran presence. He will be a nice addition to our forward group.”

Panik, seen as one of the biggest disappointments this season for the Blackhawks according to the Chicago Sun-Times, is on a two-year, $5.6 million deal.

“He’s a player that comes in here, he’s 26 years old so he’s still a young veteran but he does provide some veteran experience, takes a load off of some of our younger players that are 19, 20 years old that are playing up against top players,” Chayka said Wednesday. “Richard’s been able to play against top players and have some success.”

Clendening, 25, signed a one-year contract with the Coyotes in the offseason after spending his last season in New York with the Rangers. He has appeared in five games for Arizona this season, registering zero goals and two points.

Having spent his last two seasons in Arizona, Dauphin had three points in 24 games last season for the Coyotes. He was originally selected 39th overall by the Coyotes in the second round of the 2013 NHL Draft, but was traded to the Blackhawks with Connor Murphy this summer for Niklas Hjalmarsson.

“We are pleased to re-acquire Laurent Dauphin,” Chayka said. “He’s a good skater and a reliable player with a lot of upside. We’re happy to have him back.”

Dauphin will report to the Tucson Roadrunners of the AHL.

According to TSN’s Pierre LeBrun, there is no salary retained in the trade.

98.7 FM, Arizona’s Sports Station’s Kellan Olson and Matt Layman contributed to this report.

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