RALEIGH, NC (Aug. 30, 2001) – Jason Karmanos, Vice President and Assistant General Manager of the Carolina Hurricanes, today announced the signing of left wing Tomas Kurka to a three-year contract. As per club policy, no other terms were released.
Kurka (5’11’’, 190 lbs.) was Carolina’s first draft pick (second round, 32nd overall) in the 2000 NHL Entry Draft. He spent the past two seasons with the Plymouth Whalers of the Ontario Hockey League. In 111 regular-season games, Kurka had 52 goals and 57 assists for 108 points. He was one of Plymouth’s top playoff performers as he scored 15 goals and added 19 assists for 34 points in 33 postseason contests.
“We are pleased to sign Tomas,” Karmanos said. “Tomas is a skilled winger with great speed. We are looking forward to the beginning of his pro career.”
Kurka, 19, a native of Most, Czech Republic, was named to the 2000 OHL All-Rookie Team after scoring 64 points (36 goals, 28 assists) in 64 games in the 1999-2000 season. Kurka played in just 47 games in 2000-2001 but was nearly a point-a-game player with 44 points (15 goals, 29 assists) in 47 games. He was second on the Whalers in playoff scoring with 8 goals and 13 assists for 21 points in 16 games.