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Hurricanes Sign Ponikarovsky

02-07-11 10:00:51

The Carolina Hurricanes brought another former Maple Leaf to town as they signed Alexei Ponikarovky to a one-year deal for $1.5 million.  The forward was originally drafted by Toronto and arguably had his best seasons playing under coach Paul Maurice.  He most recently was a member of the Los Angeles Kings, but had an injury plagued season last year and only played in 61 games.
Carolina GM Jim Rutherford said that Ponikarovsky suffered from various groin injuries, but they were told that those problems have been resolved.  The GM also said that they originally had plans to bring in this player in addition to re-signing Erik Cole.
"Ponikarovsky and Cole on Eric Staal's wings might have looked pretty good," Rutherford said.  But now Canes' management will have to go back to the drawing board to try to find a replacement for Cole.  They might be able to add a player via trade or might continue to look at the free agent pool.
The winger only scored 5 goals last season, but has been a 20 goal scorer in the past.  He'll be looking to re-establish his game in Carolina.