Tim Thomas won’t have to pump Roberto Luongo’s tires after all.
The Florida Panthers traded Thomas to the Dallas Stars Wednesday for Dan Ellis in a swap of goaltenders designed to give Dallas a boost behind Kari Lehtonen in its push for the playoffs.
Ellis was shaky early for the Stars filling in for Lehtonen on the second night of a back-to-back set in a 4-2 loss to Columbus Tuesday. He is 5-6 with a 3.04 goals-against average.
The Stars added a veteran goalie three years removed from winning the Stanley Cup as they try to end a five-year postseason drought. Dallas started the day holding the final playoff spot in the Western Conference.
Thomas, 39, was 16-20-3 with a 2.87 goals-against average for the Panthers this year after sitting out last season. The Panthers acquired Luongo from Vancouver Tuesday.
Thomas won the Conn Smythe Trophy in 2010-11 when he led the Bruins to their first Stanley Cup championship in 39 years, defeating Luongo’s Canucks in the Final. He also won the Vezina Trophy twice while with the Bruins.