Valentenko to miss three months following shoulder surgery
Monday September 21st 2009, 7:32 am
Photo: Dynamo Moscow

Photo: Dynamo Moscow

New York Rangers prospect Pavel Valentenko is expected to miss three months after undergoing shoulder surgery last week.  The 22-year old defenseman, acquired this summer as part of the deal that sent Scott Gomez to Montreal, suffered the injury while playing in a preseason game for KHL team Dynamo Moscow.

“The cartilage is torn and, in addition, a piece of the collar bone is broken,” Valentenko told Sports.ru.  “I won’t be able to play for three months.”

The initial injury occurred during an exhibition game in Switzerland in late August and was exacerbated upon the team’s return to Moscow. “I took a hit In Switzerland and felt pain in my shoulder,” Valentenko explained.  “And then here in a game the shoulder gave out completely.”

Valentenko made headlines last fall when he was given permission by the Canadiens to leave their AHL affiliate in Hamilton, Ontario and return home to Russia to attend to a family matter.  Once there, he gave in to pressure from his parents and signed a three year deal with Dynamo.

His contract in Moscow includes an out-clause allowing him to return to North America after this season, and Valentenko has expressed interest in taking advantage of it in the past.

Things haven’t gone well for Valentenko since his return to Russia.  Last season, he missed six weeks with a back injury, and — once healthy — struggled to get back into the line-up amid rumors that he would leave Dynamo in the offseason due to friction with Dynamo president Michael Golovkov.  Those rumors proved false, and the Nizhnekamsk native was enjoying a successful preseason for Dynamo prior to his injury.

“Everything went wonderfully in the preseason,” Valentenko shared with Sports.ru. “I played on a pairing with [Dmitry] Vorobiev.  Little got past us, and then bam!”

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Filed under: Pavel Valentenko

9 Comments so far
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    what a bummer for this kid… I was hoping to hear him tear it up… hope he has a swift rehab.

    Comment by Amos 09.21.09 @ 8:31 am

    laurie, did you see tortorella’s comments today about anisimov? he said maybe he’s the third line center, maybe he’s the fourth and works his way up to 3rd. this is renney refusing to play the kids all over again. it makes me sick. honestly, is BOYLE going to be better than our boy artie? wtf?? i’m pissed about this. he’s actually considering him in hartford, can you believe this nonsense?

    Comment by amos 09.21.09 @ 6:28 pm

    In order to maintain my sanity, and until/unless I see the full, direct quote directly from Torts, rather than Zipay’s paraphrasing of the last part about being better served by playing in Hartford, I’m going to assume Torts was talking more about Grachev than Anisimov.

    For those who haven’t seen it, here’s the quote:

    Artem Anisimov, who scored that beautiful shorthanded goal in Boston, “could be a third line center, he could be a fourth line center and move up during the game,” said Tortorella. “I think he’s outplayed some people.” But the coach said he is still evaluating whether or not the Russian youngsters—Anisimov and Evgeny Grachev—would be better served playing 20 minutes per night in Hartford to start the season ratehr than 3 or 4 minutes a night in New York.

    There is absolutely no point in sending Anisimov back to Hartford right now. There is nothing more for him to learn or prove in the AHL. In order to adjust to the NHL, he needs to play in it. If that means playing 8-10 minutes a night in a 3rd/4th/swing role for awhile, that’s fine.

    As for Grachev, I tend to agree he should start the season in Hartford, get lots of ice time, and adjust to professional hockey and living on his own.

    Comment by laurie 09.21.09 @ 10:07 pm

    i’m with you, but i do think he’s earned more time than lauri korpikoski did last camp… although i think he was shafted with ice time as well. i’m with you that grachev needs to adjust to the speed more in hartford at least for a bit, although avery’s injury may lead to him starting with the big club. i honestly think del zotto would best be served with his last year in junior, out of the tavares spotlight, and that sanguinetti is earning a shot at the big club with his solid defensive play and quiet contributions.

    Comment by amos 09.22.09 @ 12:17 am

    Ok Amos, I’ve taken a step back closer to the ledge with you. I found the full quote from Torts, compliments of Chris Botta of Fanhouse:

    “We need to develop our own here,” said Tortorella. “We have to be really careful with him. You don’t want him playing three minutes some nights here when he can be playing 20 minutes every night in Hartford.”

    As for Korpikoski, Del Zotto, Grachev, and Sanguinetti, I agree completely with everything you said.

    Comment by laurie 09.22.09 @ 7:21 am

    As a Lightning fan in Tampa, I have become pretty adept at translating, “Tortonese.” Torts double talks, on purpose. I thinks he likes what Anisimov has shown so far, and he will stay in the NHL. Torts never likes to show his hand too early.

    Comment by Ruthe 09.22.09 @ 9:37 am

    That’s what I’m hoping for, and why I haven’t gone completely off the deep end yet, Ruthe. ;) He made comments about Aaron Voros being on the bubble last night, and quite frankly, I’ve known Voros was going to be on this team most of the summer, based on the PR campaign that’s been waged for him on the Rangers web site and now during game broadcasts. Marion Gaborik’s “best friend” Aaron has about as much of a chance of being sent down to start the season as Vinny Prospal.

    Comment by laurie 09.22.09 @ 9:44 am

    Laurie: Let’s hope Torts handles Anisimov the right way. Look what happened to Stamkos in Tampa with Barry Melrose saying he wasn’t ready to play in the NHL. Then along comes Tocchet and with a little “tough love,” (which included Stamkos sitting in the press box several times taking notes) he had a tremendous second half. Like I said, you just never know with Tortorella. It’s hard for him to keep his emotions in check.

    Comment by Ruthe 09.22.09 @ 10:34 am

    Hope Pavel Valentenko will feel beter after surgery, all the best and happy birthday malish…

    Comment by Oksana 10.21.09 @ 2:44 am



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