Gene J. Puskar
January 06, 2016

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) The Nashville Predators traded defenseman Seth Jones to the Columbus Blue Jackets for center Ryan Johansen on Wednesday, giving up a young piece of their defense in search of some more offense.

''Ryan is a big, young center that can score, set up goals, win faceoffs,'' general manager David Poile said. ''He's a No. 1 center who is still growing his game and has the size and skill that we have been looking for to match up with the best in the league.''

Johansen, 23, played in every game for Columbus the past two seasons, and the 6-foot-3, 218-pound center from Vancouver, British Columbia, had six goals and 20 assists in 38 games this season. He has 79 goals and 114 assists in 309 career games and was the fourth overall pick in the 2010 draft.

Jones, 21, was the fourth overall pick in the 2013 draft, and the right-handed 6-foot-3 defenseman has played 40 games for Nashville this season with one goal and 10 assists.

Johansen also has a 51.8 percent success rate on faceoffs, including 52 percent this season. That puts him in the top 10 among players with at least 400 draws.

Nashville leads the NHL with goals by defenseman thanks to captain Shea Weber and Roman Josi, and the Predators ranked second only to Dallas for most points by a defensive corps going into Tuesday night with 99 points. But Nashville is 9-13-3 when outshooting opponents this season with their latest loss Tuesday night, a 4-1 decision to Winnipeg after outshooting the Jets 44-18.

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