The New York Islanders announced on Wednesday that Thomas Vanek has been traded to the Montreal Canadiens in exchange for a conditional second round pick in the 2014 NHL Draft and forward Sebastian Collberg.
Collberg, 20, was selected in the second round (33rd overall) of the 2012 NHL Draft. A native of Mariestad, Sweden, Colberg has nine points (three goals, six assists) in 40 games this season with Frolunda of the Swedish Hockey League; it’s his third full season playing in Sweden’s top league. On the international stage, Colberg has represented Sweden at each of the last three World Junior Championships, winning gold in 2011-12, and silver in both 2012-13 and 2013-14.
The conditions of the second round selection are if Montreal makes the playoffs this year, the Islanders will receive the Canadiens second round pick in 2014. If Montreal qualifies for the playoffs, the Islanders will send their fifth round selection in 2014 to Montreal.
Vanek, 30, scored 44 points (17 goals, 27 assists) in 47 games with the Islanders this season after being acquired in a trade from the Buffalo Sabres on October 27. The Vienna, Austria native has played nine NHL seasons, totaling 271 goals and 270 assists for 541 points with a plus-33 rating in 645 career games. Vanek has also played in 36 career NHL playoff games, totaling 20 points (15 goals and five assists). The Sabres selected Vanek in the first round (fifth overall) of the 2003 NHL Draft, making him the highest selected Austrian hockey player in league history. He represented Buffalo at the 2009 NHL All-Star Weekend in Montreal, QC.
On the international stage, Vanek has represented Austria the World Junior Championships (2001-02, 2002-03 and 2003-04) and World Championships (2003-04, 2007-08, 2008-09 and 2012-13). He made his Olympic debut this February in Sochi, serving as team captain.
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