The Boston Bruins have claimed right wing Mariusz Czerkawski off waivers from the Toronto Maple Leafs, it was announced today by Bruins General Manager Mike O'Connell. Czerkawski will report to Boston as soon as his U.S. visa process is completed. O’Connell also announced that center Ben Walter has been returned to Providence of the American Hockey League.
Czerkawski, 33, returns to the team with which he began his NHL career, as the Bruins originally drafted the right wing as their fifth pick, 106th overall, in the 1991 NHL Entry Draft. He has played in 19 games with the Maple Leafs this season with four goals and one assist for five points in those contests. He was in his first season with Toronto after signing as a free agent on Sept. 9, 2005 and Toronto became his fifth NHL team.
The 6’0”, 200 lb. native of Radomsko, Poland played three seasons in Sweden before joining the Bruins for four regular season and 13 playoff games at the end of the 1993-94 season and played two-plus years in Boston before going to Edmonton in a trade for Bill Ranford on January 11, 1996. He was traded to the NY Islanders for new Boston teammate Dan LaCouture in August, 1997 and played five seasons with the Islanders, were he scored 30-or-more goals twice and enjoyed his best NHL year in 1999-2000 with 35 goals and 35 assists for 70 points while playing in the NHL All-Star Game. He was traded to Montreal in June, 2002 and played one season with the Canadiens before returning to the Islanders for the 2003-04 season.
Czerkawski has scored 20+ goals in six of his eight full NHL seasons. He has career NHL totals to date of 211 goals and 219 assists for 430 points with 270 penalty minutes in 729 career NHL games.