The Flyers added center Valtteri Filppula - a veteran player whose production has dipped in recent seasons - and a pair of draft picks by sending defenseman Mark Streit to Tampa Bay on Wednesday afternoon.
"We get a couple more swings in the draft," Flyers general manager Ron Hextall said after announcing the trade at the team's practice facility in Voorhees, "and we added a piece that we felt could help us this year and next year."
They also added $5 million toward next season's salary cap, giving them less flexibility in the offseason.
In the deal, the Flyers received fourth- and seventh-round draft picks in 2017. The seventh-rounder was a conditional pick that was granted after Tampa turned around and dealt Streit to Pittsburgh for a fourth-round selection in the 2018 draft.
Filppula, who will turn 33 on March 20, will probably center the second line, and Hextall is hoping he is available Thursday against visiting Florida. Brayden Schenn is expected to shift back to wing.
In 59 games this season, Filppula has seven goals, 34 points, and a plus-1 rating. He played on Detroit's 2008 Stanley Cup championship team.
"He makes us a better team," Hextall said, adding that the two-way center gives the Flyers "stability up the middle."
Streit, 39, has five goals, 21 points, and a minus-10 rating this season.
Tampa Bay general manager Steve Yzerman basically used the two deals to dump Filppula's salary, telling reporters, "We're in a position to be better off in the future."
Hextall, meanwhile, said getting the 6-foot, 196-pound Finn for the next year and a quarter was attractive. "On July 1, you don't get a player like this on a one-year deal," he said.
Filppula has one year left on a contract that has a $5 million cap hit. His no-movement clause carries over to the Flyers, meaning he will have to be protected in the expansion draft.
Hextall, who tried unsuccessfully to make a deal with Pittsburgh, said the trade improves the Flyers' chances of making the playoffs this season. They began Wednesday four points out of the last wild-card spot.
"This gives us another guy who makes plays," Hextall said. "We will continue to look for finishers. . . . I think when Travis [Konecny] comes back, that will help. Travis is a finisher. . . . I look at this as an upgrade in our playmaking."
Two years ago, Hextall made a terrific deal with Tampa Bay, sending Braydon Coburn to the Lightning for Radko Gudas, a first-rounder in 2015, and a third-rounder in 2015. That first-round pick was later traded to Toronto as part of a deal to move up in the 2015 draft and select Konecny.
At times, Filppula centered Jonathan Drouin and Ryan Callahan (or Brian Boyle) this season. Filppula's production has declined since he scored 25 goals for Tampa By in 2013-14. Since then, he has had seasons of 12 goals, eight, and seven this season.
Hextall said he wasn't concerned by Filppula's scoring dip.
"You have to be really careful with production because, depending on what team you're on and where you get slotted and who you play with, production can go up and down based on your linemates," Hextall said. "This guy can play on the power play, can play on the penalty kill, can play against the top line. He's a good player."
It was a surprising deal because Filppula's no-movement clause transfers to the Flyers. That will give them $5 million less to spend in the free-agent market in the offseason. Hextall said he was "comfortable" assuming the no-movement contract.
Hextall praised Streit, who can become an unrestricted free agent July 1. The Flyers agreed to pay 4.7 percent of his salary.
"You'll go a long ways before you find a better person, a better example for your young players," Hextall said. "I'm happy for Mark, too, because he ends up in a spot where he has a chance to win."
Hextall said Filppula has "very similar" leadership traits to Streit, and he felt that was important because "we've got kids coming. And the kids" - Oskar Lindblom is their best forward prospect - "are going to be here sooner rather than later."
Filppula, who was a healthy scratch Dec. 28 for missing a team meeting, is a player "we've liked for years," Hextall said.
After dealing Streit, the Flyers have seven defensemen. Hextall had been uncomfortable carrying eight, "so this gives us a little bit of clarity on the back end."
The third-year GM said he came close to making a few other moves but hinted that other teams' salary-cap space prevented those trades from happening.