With more and more NHL-stars choosing to play for teams across Europe during the ongoing NHL lockout, EHC Red Bull Munich have taken advantage of its extensive network of valuable contacts and picked up Paul Stastny from the Colorado Avalanche last night. After signing Winnipeg Jets forward Blake Wheeler earlier this month, the 26 year old forward is the second NHL-star to join the Red Bulls and considerably strengthens their current playing roster.
The American born national player hails from a Slovakian background and is the son of NHL-legend Peter Stastny. His hockey career also makes for an impressive read. Drafted #44 in Round 2 of the 2005 NHL draft, Stastny has played an incredible 442 games for the Colorado Avalanche, picking up 382 scoring points along the way. He has also been named Assistant Captain by his teammates and has worn the "A" on his playing jersey since the 2008/09 season. Stastny has played for the US National team at two World Cups (2007, 2012) and was part of the US Olympic team at the Vancouver Olympics in 2010, adding another 20 scoring points in 21 games for his country.
Stastny older brother, Yan Stastny, also plays in the DEL, having signed with the Nürnberg Ice Tigers last season. "It's a dream come true for us", says EHC manager Christian Winkler. "We know that we're running a risk because of the uncertainty of how soon the NHL lockout may come to an end, but it's great for us to pick up such talented players. We wanted to strengthen the team because the upcoming weeks will dictate our direction this season".
If the player registration papers come through in time, Stastny will be given his debut for EHC on the road in Hannover tomorrow night (November 16th), wearing the number 11 jersey. His first home game will be alongside fellow NHL-star Blake Wheeler on Sunday November 18th against Augsburg Panthers at Olympia Eisstadion - and event not to be missed.