The return sees forward prospect Janne Kuokkanen, defenceman Frederik Claesson and a conditional 2020 fourth-round draft pick headed back to New Jersey. Also as part of the deal, New Jersey is retaining 50 per cent of Vatanen’s remaining salary in the trade.
The Hurricanes needed to add defensive depth with Dougie Hamilton on injured reserve and Brett Pesce suffering an upper-body injury over the weekend.
Vatanen was placed on injured reserve and hasn’t played since Feb. 1 due to a leg injury, but he is expected to the ice before the playoffs.
The 28-year-old Jyvaskyla, Finland native had 23 points in 47 games this season while averaging 21:45 of ice-time per game.
Hurricanes general manager Don Waddell acquired forward Vincent Trocheck from the Florida Panthers earlier in the day and also completed a trade for defenceman Brady Skjei from the New York Rangers just prior to the 3 p.m. ET deadline.
“Sami is player that fits our system well,” Waddell said in a press release. “His skating, vision and puck-moving skills will help us out in all facets of the game. We expect him to return to the lineup in early March.”
Kuokkanen was selected by the Hurricanes in the second round of the 2016 draft and has spent the past three seasons with the Charlotte Checkers of the AHL.
Claesson has 150 games of NHL experience but has spent the entirety of 2019-20 with the Checkers.