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Sharks expect Havlat to open season on IR

Sep 9, 2013, 4:34 PM EDT

martinhavlatgetty Getty Images

Though his health is improving, Martin Havlat isn’t likely to be ready for the start of the season.

“Marty had that [surgery] and he’s worked really hard,” Sharks head coach Todd McLellan told CSN Bay Area. “He’s right on schedule, from what I’ve been told. But, to put him in a situation where he’s not ready, and at risk, makes no sense.”

Havlat, 32, underwent major groin surgery (bilateral pelvic reconstruction) in late June and, because he was recovering from injury, was ineligible to be bought out during this summer’s 48-hour compliance window.

Havlat missed seven regular season games last season with a lower-body injury, and nine playoff games with the aforementioned groin issue.

The Czech winger hurt his groin during San Jose’s opening-round series against Vancouver and tried to return for the Kings series, but lasted just a few minutes in his first game back and didn’t play again.

The situation between the Sharks and Havlat then reportedly became acrimonious, according to CSN:

In what could be perceived as a sign of frustration from the organization, Havlat was given a temporary locker stall in the Sharks’ dressing room at their practice facility between games six and seven against the Kings. To put that in perspective, AHL call-ups Freddie Hamilton, Alex Stalock, Matt Pelech and Matt Tennyson all had regular locker stalls.

In the press box for Game 7 at Staples Center, Havlat sat by himself, while the other Sharks scratches sat together on the complete opposite end in the seats set aside for visiting players.

In mid-July, San Jose GM Doug Wilson was unsure if Havlat would play for San Jose again.

“Havlat had a pretty extensive procedure done,” Wilson explained. “He is an important player to us and we missed him when he wasn’t in there. There is no timeline for a return, so I don’t have an answer for that one.”

Should the Sharks put Havlat on LTIR (long term injured reserve) to start the year, they could free up his $5 million cap hit to spend elsewhere.

That could come in handy, as a number of solid UFA veterans are currently without work.

  1. swenny19 - Sep 9, 2013 at 5:00 PM

    Even though Heatley has been slow, lazy, and has shown no work ethic for the wild I’m really happy we got rid of this guy. Can’t play a full season to save his life.

    • lordfletcher - Sep 9, 2013 at 6:04 PM

      Havlat is a great guy but my goodness, he is made of glass.

      I too am very happy the Wild were able to make this trade. Heater has been great in the locker-room and has done on the ice what we all thought he could bring to the table. He has slowed down a bit more than anticipated but I think he will play a new style of offense this year and camp out in the slot / in front of the goalie using his big body and then once on the PP he can play wing and snipe all day.

      The best part of the deal for the Wild is that they lose an extra year of a contract with Havlat being gone. The Wild will use that money (saved) for not having to pay Havlat / Heater and try to bring in Vanek, will re-signing Poms and Brodin.

      Go Wild

  2. ethanmacleod1685 - Sep 9, 2013 at 5:43 PM

    Hope we use that 5 mill somehow, we need a top 6 winger to replace him if we’re gonna contend this year IMO

  3. Exiled1 - Sep 9, 2013 at 8:06 PM

    an enigma. wrapped in a riddle. wrapped in a tampon.

  4. waye09 - Sep 10, 2013 at 12:45 AM

    So does he get his locker back if he’s a good boy?

  5. amityvillefun - Sep 10, 2013 at 2:00 AM

    “Achoo!”

    Oops, Havlat sneezed. He’ll be out for the rest of the year with “upper body injury.”

    Bummer this guy can’t seem to stay healthy. He’s got serious talent but it’s useless if he can’t be relied upon to play.

  6. bleedingteal4life - Sep 10, 2013 at 4:19 PM

    He’s good but not worth the trouble. Too unreliable and fragile. If I remember correctly, his last injury (groin) was from getting off the bench? I hope they can find a worthy replacement

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