Thursday, December 3, 2009

Jiri Tlusty to join Rats

The Carolina Hurricanes today acquired forward Jiri Tlusty from the Toronto Maple Leafs in exchange for the rights to 2009 first-round draft pick Philippe Paradis.

Tlusty (pronounced "To-loo-stee") will join the Albany River Rats, while Paradis, 18, remains in juniors with the Shawinigan Cataractes of the QMJHL. 

Tlusty, a six-foot-tall 209-pound goal-scorer and playmaker from the Czech Republic, was a first-round pick by the Leafs in 2006. The 21-year-old has skated in 74 NHL contests, scoring 10 goals and 10 assists. 

In 130 regular season and playoff games with the Toronto Marlies, Tlusty netted 45 goals and accumulated 70 assists for 116 points. Tlusty tallied 66 points (25 G, 41 A) in 66 games last season with the Marlies and has 15 points (8 G, 7 A) in 19 games so far this year. 

Highlights of Tlusty's five-goal game against the Syracuse Crunch on February 18, 2009.

"They're two different types of players," said Hurricanes GM Jim Rutherford, referring to Paradis and Tlusty. "We need to score more goals and we need to have skill. In our opinion, Philippe is more along the lines of a power forward and Jiri is more skilled where we project him being able to put up points in our top six."

"This trade gives us an opportunity to pick up a young, skilled forward who is further along in the development phase," Rutherford said. "I'm dealing with trying to put a player in our lineup by the start of next season that's going to be able to help produce points."

Read more at Tracking the Storm.