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by Staff Writer / Carolina Hurricanes
Carolina’s leading scorer from 2003-04 agrees to two-year deal

RALEIGH, NC – Jim Rutherford, President and General Manager of the Carolina Hurricanes, announced today that the Hurricanes have agreed to terms with forward Josef Vasicek on a two-year contract that will pay him $1 million in 2005-06 and $1.3 million in 2006-07.

“Josef is coming off two very good seasons and is approaching the prime of his career,” said Rutherford. “We are very happy to have him signed to a multi-year deal.”

Vasicek, 24, ranked eighth in the Czech Republic Extraleague in scoring last season with 43 points (20 goals, 23 assists) in 52 games for Slavia Praha. He led Slavia Praha in points during the regular season, and ranked second behind teammate Ziggy Palffy (21) in goals. Vasicek ranked tied for second on his team in playoff scoring, tallying seven points (1g, 6a) in seven postseason contests.

Vasicek (6’4’’, 210 lbs.) led the Hurricanes in goals (19), points (45), games played (82) and game-winning goals (5) and was tied for second in assists (26) and power-play goals (6) in 2003-04. He established career-highs in games played (82), goals (19), assists (26), penalty minutes (60), power-play goals (6) and game-winning goals (5). Drafted by the Hurricanes in the fourth round, 91st overall, in the 1998 NHL Entry Draft, Vasicek has totaled 51 goals and 66 assists (117 points) and 199 penalty minutes in 293 career games with Carolina. He has played in 29 career playoff games with Carolina, notching seven points (5g, 2a) and 12 penalty minutes.

Vasicek made the jump straight to the NHL in 2000 after a stellar junior hockey career with Sault Ste. Marie of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL). He scored 26 goals and had 46 assists (72 points) in his final season of juniors in 1999-2000, serving as the Greyhounds’ team captain. He was also named co-Playoff MVP for Sault Ste. Marie after notching 20 points (5g, 15a) in 17 playoff games. He completed his OHL career with 128 points (47g, 81a) and 79 penalty minutes in 120 games.

The Havlickuv Brod, Czech Republic native has also been active in international play for his home nation, representing the Czech Republic in the 2003 and 2005 International Ice Hockey Federation World Championships, and in the 2004 World Cup of Hockey. He had two points (1g, 1a) and had a plus/minus rating of plus-3 for the gold-medal-winning Czech Republic in the 2005 World Championships. He also won a gold medal with the Czechs at the 2000 World Junior Championships, tallying four points (1g, 3a) in seven games.

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