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Dainius Gintas Zubrus (born June 16, 1978) is a Lithuanianmarker professional ice hockey right winger and center, currently playing for the New Jersey Devils of the National Hockey League.

NHL career

Born in Elektrėnai, Lithuania, then part of the Soviet Union. In the summer of 1989, Zubrus would move to Kharkiv, Ukrainemarker to train under Ivan Pravilov on the Druzhba-78 squad. He would continue to develop his play there until the end of 1995.

Dainius Zubrus was drafted 15th overall in the 1996 NHL Entry Draft by the Philadelphia Flyers from the Caledon Canadians of the Metro Junior A Hockey League. As of the 2006 draft, Zubrus was the highest drafted Tier II Junior "A" player since the Canadian Junior A Hockey League's 1993 inception (since surpassed by Kyle Turris at 2007 NHL Entry Draft). Prior to being traded to Caledon, Zubrus played for the Pembroke Lumber Kings of the Central Junior A Hockey League. He made his NHL debut on October 5, 1996, scoring a goal against the Florida Panthers. In his rookie season he helped the Flyers reach the Stanley Cup final. Like Kasparaitis, Dainius trained with Aleksey Nikiforov.

The Flyers traded him to the Montreal Canadiens on March 10, 1999, with a pair of draft picks, for Mark Recchi. He registered his first career hat-trick on October 14, 2000, against the Chicago Blackhawks, and was traded by the Canadiens to the Washington Capitals along with Trevor Linden for Richard Zedník and Jan Bulis on March 13, 2001.

During the 2004–05 NHL lockout, Zubrus decided to play abroad with Washington Capitals teammate Alexander Semin. He played 42 regular season games for HC Lada Togliatti, tallying 19 points on 8 goals and 11 assists. He also appeared in 10 playoff games while in the Russian Super League, scoring 3 goals and 1 assist.

Zubrus returned to the Capitals the following 2005-06 season and posted a career-high 57 points playing alongside star rookie Alex Ovechkin. In the 2006-07 season, Zubrus continued his impressive form posting 52 points in 60 games before he was traded to the Buffalo Sabres along with Timo Helbling for Jiří Novotný and a first round draft pick on February 27, 2007.

On July 3, 2007, Zubrus a free agent, signed a 6-year $20.4 million dollar deal with the New Jersey Devils.

On November 23, 2008, Dainius Zubrus had one of the best offensive games in New Jersey Devils history. Zubrus tied a team record with four goals to help New Jersey win its season-high fourth straight game, 7-3 over the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Career statistics

Dainius Zubrus with the New Jersey Devils.
Regular season Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
1995–96 Pembroke Lumber Kings CJHL 28 19 13 32 73
1995–96 Caledon Canadians MTJHL 7 3 7 10 2 17 11 12 23 4
1996–97 Philadelphia Flyers NHL 68 8 13 21 22 19 5 4 9 12
1997–98 Philadelphia Flyers NHL 69 8 25 33 42 5 0 1 1 2
1998–99 Philadelphia Flyers NHL 63 3 5 8 25
1998–99 Montreal Canadiens NHL 17 3 5 8 4
1999–00 Montreal Canadiens NHL 73 14 28 42 54
2000–01 Montreal Canadiens NHL 49 12 12 24 30
2000–01 Washington Capitals NHL 12 1 1 2 7 6 0 0 0 2
2001–02 Washington Capitals NHL 71 17 26 43 38
2002–03 Washington Capitals NHL 63 13 22 35 43 6 2 2 4 4
2003–04 Washington Capitals NHL 54 12 15 27 38
2004–05 HC Lada Togliatti RSL 42 8 11 19 85 10 3 1 4 22
2005–06 Washington Capitals NHL 71 23 34 57 84
2006–07 Washington Capitals NHL 60 20 32 52 50
2006–07 Buffalo Sabres NHL 19 4 4 8 12 15 0 8 8 8
2007–08 New Jersey Devils NHL 82 13 25 38 38 5 0 1 1 8
2008–09 New Jersey Devils NHL 82 15 25 40 69 7 0 1 1 10
NHL Totals 853 166 272 438 556 63 7 17 24 46


International career

Originally, Zubrus had suited up for the Russian national team during the World Cup of Hockey in 2004. But since then, he has played internationally for Lithuania, most notably in the 2005 World Championships. He had told the press that, "Lithuania needs me more than Russia." Because of the existence of the USSRmarker, players born during its time as a nation were able to choose whether to play for Russia, or their own country after the breakup. He now plans to represent Lithuania in all of his future international hockey appearances.

References

  1. http://druzhba78.com/info/
  2. D.Zubrus - geriausias NHL lygos dienos žaidėjas. retrieved on 2008-11-24


External links




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