Photo credit: Harry How

The Washington Capitals have dealt Cody Eakin and their second round pick (54th overall) to the Dallas Stars for high-scoring center Mike Ribeiro. Ribeiro is 32-years-old, has a cap hit of $5 million, and is in the last year of his five-year contract.

It’s another shrewd deal by General Manager George McPhee, who adds a player who can fill one of the Capitals most glaring needs: second-line center, and for not an overwhelming price. If you recall, Buffalo’s Paul Gaustad fetched a first round pick from Nashville at the trade deadline and is nothing more than a third-line center.

The Hockey News describes the former Star as a player with patience and soft hands who also plays with a bit of a snarl. They also note his skill in the shootout — Ribeiro is 21 for 55 in his career.

Ribeiro scored 18 goals last year, and has scored 18 or more goals for the past five seasons. Since the 2003 season, Ribeiro has averaged 65 points per season, with a high of 83 in 2007.

Cody Eakin, who had 4 goals and 8 points in 30 games with Washington, had few flashes of brilliance during his first professional season, and was expendable with Nicklas Backstrom anchoring the first line, Brooks Laich entrenched as the third-line center, and Marcus Johansson still developing.

Eakin is currently out in Las Vegas for a road trip and just recently tweeted out the below picture. We hope he takes the news well. Farwell, dear ginger.