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Canes Acquire Defenseman Joni Pitkanen

Tuesday, 07.01.2008 / 12:12 PM / News
By Ken Preston
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Canes Acquire Defenseman Joni Pitkanen

Deal sends forward Erik Cole to Edmonton

RALEIGH, NC—Jim Rutherford, President and General Manager of the National Hockey League’s Carolina Hurricanes, announced today that the team has acquired restricted free-agent defenseman Joni Pitkanen (YOH-nee PIHT-ka-nuhn) from the Edmonton Oilers in exchange for forward Erik Cole.

“Joni is the type of puck-moving, offensive player we hoped to add to our defensive corps,” said Rutherford. “He is a proven NHL player who will join Joe Corvo in strengthening our power play.”

Pitkanen, 24, scored eight goals and earned 18 assists (26 points) in 63 games in 2007-08 to rank second among Edmonton defensemen in scoring. The Oulu, Finland, native averaged 24:07 in ice time per game last season, ranking him second among Oilers skaters, and 22nd among all NHL defensemen. Pitkanen (6’3”, 210 lbs.) has played in 269 career NHL regular-season games with Philadelphia and Edmonton, scoring 33 goals and earning 109 assists (142 points), with 12 goals and 52 assists (64 points) coming on the power play. The Flyers selected Pitkanen in the first round, fourth overall, in the 2002 NHL Entry Draft.

Pitkanen has represented Finland in numerous international competitions. He helped his country claim the bronze medal in 2002 and 2003 at the International Ice Hockey Federation World Junior Championships, and won the Directorate Award as the tournament’s best defenseman in 2003. He was a reserve for Team Finland as it claimed the silver medal at the 2004 World Cup of Hockey, and was named to Finland’s Olympic team in 2006, but withdrew due to injury. Pitkanen was also a member of the Philadelphia Phantoms in 2004-05, when the Flyers’ top minor-league affiliate claimed the Calder Cup as the American Hockey League’s champion.

Cole leaves the Hurricanes having skated in 418 career regular-season games in six seasons, ranking him seventh all-time in games played by a Carolina player. He ranks third all-time among Hurricanes skaters in goals (129) and shorthanded goals (7), fourth in penalty minutes (406), and sixth in assists (151), points (280) and power-play goals (32).

“We thank Erik for his years of service to the Hurricanes organization and the Triangle community,” said Rutherford. “We wish Erik, his wife Emily, and their family the best of luck in the future.”

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 NYI 47 32 14 1 155 130 65
2 DET 48 28 11 9 144 123 65
3 TBL 49 30 15 4 158 131 64
4 MTL 46 30 13 3 126 108 63
5 PIT 47 27 12 8 143 120 62
6 NYR 45 27 14 4 135 110 58
7 WSH 47 24 14 9 140 124 57
8 BOS 48 25 16 7 126 121 57
9 FLA 45 20 15 10 111 127 50
10 OTT 46 19 18 9 126 128 47
11 TOR 48 22 23 3 142 150 47
12 PHI 49 20 22 7 134 149 47
13 CBJ 46 21 22 3 117 145 45
14 NJD 47 17 22 8 107 134 42
15 CAR 47 17 25 5 102 122 39
16 BUF 48 14 31 3 90 171 31

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
E. Staal 42 16 14 -6 30
J. Faulk 47 9 19 -13 28
E. Lindholm 47 9 11 -11 20
J. Tlusty 40 12 7 -11 19
J. Skinner 42 10 9 -7 19
R. Nash 47 7 12 -4 19
N. Gerbe 43 5 13 -3 18
V. Rask 47 6 9 -10 15
A. Sekera 45 1 14 -6 15
C. Terry 34 6 3 -3 9
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
A. Khudobin 6 8 2 .918 2.30
C. Ward 11 17 3 .911 2.45