The Nashville Predators keep finding themselves in the news. After announcing that former captain Mike Fisher was coming out of retirement and would sign in the coming weeks with the team, the Predators have now acquired another center via trade, albeit a minor one, as they have traded minor league defenseman Andrew O’Brien to the Dallas Stars in exchange for center Mark McNeill, according to the Dallas Stars.
Obviously added as a depth forward for the AHL’s Milwaukee Admirals, McNeill was once considered a top prospect of the Chicago Blackhawks after being drafted in the first round of the 2011 draft. Considered a strong possibility to make the proud franchise immediately after he was drafted, he didn’t make the team and found himself languishing in the AHL for years, never getting an opportunity to show what he could do in the NHL. He only played one game with Chicago before the Blackhawks moved him at the trade last year to Dallas in exchange for defenseman Johnny Oduya. He did make one appearance last year in Dallas, but spent most of the last year and all of this year with the Texas Stars. He is considered to have shooting ability, solid speed and good defensive skills, but has always struggled with consistency. He has played in 312 games in his AHL career so far. This year, the 24-year-old has played just 18 for the Texas Stars and has five goals and an assist.
As for O’Brien, the 24-year-old defenseman has also played many years in the AHL, never having been promoted to the NHL. The blueliner has played 188 career AHL games, but in just 21 games this season. He has put up three assists and 27 penalty minutes with the Milwaukee Admirals. He will report to the Texas Stars.