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Hurricanes lose Pitkanen for remainder of season

Wednesday, 04.03.2013 / 9:57 AM / News

NHL.com

Don't be surprised if Carolina Hurricanes general manager Jim Rutherford is on the phone making a last ditch-effort to obtain a defenseman prior to Wednesday's NHL Trade Deadline at 3 p.m. ET.

That's because Rutherford announced Wednesday morning that veteran defenseman Joni Pitkanen will be sidelined the next 10-12 weeks after suffering a broken left calcaneus bone (heel bone) during the second period of Tuesday's loss to the Washington Capitals at PNC Arena.

The 29-year-old has one goal and nine points in a career-low 22 games for the Hurricanes this season, averaging 22:49 of ice time per game. He missed 13 games in February and March due to a lower-body injury.

Rutherford acquired 32-year-old defenseman Marc-Andre Bergeron from the Tampa Bay Lightning on Tuesday in exchange for Adam Hall and a 2013 seventh-round draft pick.

Selected by the Philadelphia Flyers in the first round of the 2002 NHL Draft, Pitkanen has 57 goals, 225 assists (282 points) and 484 penalty minutes in 535 career NHL games with Philadelphia, the Edmonton Oilers and Carolina.

It means a lot to us, we're very excited. We're looking to continue to build on [our] top core talent of young players. It's just a great opportunity for us to really build high.

— Panthers vice president of hockey operations Travis Viola after Florida won the No. 1 pick in the NHL Draft Lottery