Valentenko to North America
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06-17-2010, 09:09 PM
Join Date: Oct 2006
Originally Posted by
Didn't he leave because he was unhappy to be stuck in Hamilton (AHL)?
It was more complicated than that. His family needed money, they convinced him to come home to deal with family issues, but when he got there his dad had a lucrative contract with Dynamo on the table for him to sign. He's said all along that he wanted to come back and try to make the NHL when that contract was up.
That said, I think those who are penciling him into the opening night line-up are being way too optimistic. In two years in Russia he managed to play only 15 games. His first season he suffered a serious back injury. Last year he missed almost the entire season after a pre-season shoulder injury required surgery. He came back for a couple games, then suffered another, minor, injury. But even after he recovered from that and was completely healthy he wasn't able to win a spot in the line-up.
While I'm sure he's coming over intending to win a spot in the NHL, given how the past two years have gone, you can bet he understands there's a very good chance he'll need to prove himself in the AHL first.
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