New York Rangers President, General Manager and Head Coach Glen Sather announced today that the club has agreed to terms with unrestricted free agent left wing Jan Hlavac. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
"Jan is a player who enjoyed success in New York and we feel he can be an asset to our hockey club once again," stated Sather. "He has the ability to produce solid offensive numbers and provides excellent depth to the left side of our lineup."
Hlavac, 26, skated in 61 contests with the Vancouver Canucks and Carolina Hurricanes last season, registering 10 goals and 16 assists for 26 points, along with 28 penalty minutes. He began the 2002-03 season with the Canucks, posting one goal and one assist for two points in nine matches. After being acquired by Carolina on November 1, in exchange for Marek Malik, Hlavac collected nine goals and 15 assists for 24 points, along with 22 penalty minutes in 52 games with the Hurricanes. He posted the first three-assist game of his career on December 12 vs. Calgary. Hlavac also registered his third hat trick of his career with three power play goals on November 29 vs. Detroit.
The 6-0, 200-pound left wing has appeared in 284 career NHL contests with the Carolina Hurricanes, Philadelphia Flyers, Vancouver Canucks and Rangers, registering 73 goals and 90 assists for 163 points, along with 82 penalty minutes. Hlavac spent two seasons in New York from 1999-00 through 2000-01, registering 47 goals and 59 assists for 106 points, along with 36 penalty minutes. He established career-highs in all statistical categories during the 2000-01 season, posting 28 goals and 36 assists for 64 points in 79 matches. In 1999-00, Hlavac tied for fifth on the Rangers and ranked fifth among NHL rookies with 42 points (19 goals, 23 assists). He also ranked third in goals (19) and seventh in assists (23) among league rookies.
As a member of the Czech Republic national team, Hlavac captured a gold medal at the 1999 World Championships in Norway, collecting the game winning, overtime goal in the Championship game vs. Finland. He led the club with 10 points (five goals, five assists) in 10 tournament matches. Hlavac also participated in the 1995 and 1996 World Junior Championships with the Czech Republic.
The native of Prague, Czech Republic was the originally the Islanders' second choice, 28th overall, in the 1995 NHL Entry Draft. His rights were acquired by the Rangers on June 26, 1999, along with Calgary's 1999 first (Jamie Lundmark) and third (Patrick Aufiero) round draft choices in exchange for Marc Savard and the Rangers 1999 first round draft choice (Oleg Saprykin). Hlavac was acquired by Philadelphia from New York on August 20, 2001, along with Pavel Brendl, Kim Johnsson and a 2003 third round draft choice (Stefan Ruzicka) in exchange for Eric Lindros and future considerations. On December 17, 2001, he was acquired by the Canucks, along with a 2002 third round draft choice (Brett Skinner), in exchange for Donald Brashear and a 2002 sixth round draft choice (Jaroslav Balastik).