Director of Communications
Tuesday, August 16, 2005
713.361.7930 (Direct Line)
AEROS SIGN D CURTIS MURPHY;
WILD INKS RW TETARENKO, RW WANVIG
Fan favorite returns after two-year hiatus; owns three pro championship rings, one college championship
The American Hockey Leagues Houston Aeros have signed two-time AHL Defenseman of the Year Curtis Murphy, who played for the Aeros from 2001-03, general manager Tom Lynn announced Tuesday. Also, the National Hockey Leagues Minnesota Wild has signed right wing Joey Tetarenko, who played for the Aeros for the final three months of the 2004-05 season, and right wing Kyle Wanvig, an Aero for most of the past four seasons.
Murphy, 29, (12/3/75) enters his eighth pro season, and he owns three championship rings from his previous seven campaigns. The 5-foot-8, 192-pound native of Kerrobert, Sask., was a member of Orlandos Turner Cup team in 2001, Houstons Calder Cup squad in 2003 and Milwaukees Calder Cup team in 2004. Murphy became just the fourth player in AHL history to garner back-to-back Eddie Shore Trophies as the leagues top defenseman when he was given the award for the second time in 2003-04. Murphy played for Yaroslavl Lokomotiv in Russia in 2004-05, totaling 12 points (6-6=12) and 50 penalty minutes in 60 games.
Murphy spent both the 2001-02 and 2002-03 seasons with the Aeros. He had 101 points (35-66=101) in 160 games with Houston, while chipping in 15 points (4-11=15) in 36 playoff contests. Murphy, who set an Aeros record for goals by a defenseman with 23 in 2002-03, is tied for third on the teams all-time goal list for defensemen with 35 and is fourth among club blueliners in assists and points. All this, while playing only two seasons with the Aeros.
To go overseas last year was good timing all around, said Murphy, who owns career totals of 323 points (107-216=323) in 512 games 451 in the IHL and AHL. I had never been overseas in my life. It was interesting to see a new culture. Russia is different than even Europe.
I love Houston, Murphy added. I know the organization is really great to play for and is hungry for a championship. I have friends in Houston from before. Im going to hit 30 this year so Im starting to learn that my role is to help out the younger guys. If I can do that, thats fine by me. I enjoy playing the game, and Ill play it until they boot me out.
Curtis Murphy is a proven winner at all levels, Lynn said, also noting Murphy won a championship with the University of North Dakota in 1997. His hard-nosed determination epitomizes the Aeros organization. Without a doubt, Murphy has been the top defenseman at this level for several years, and theres no one better to help our young corps of blueliners develop.
Murphy was a First Team IHL All-Star in 2001 and a First Team AHL All-Star in 2003 and 2004, and he has played in six All-Star Games in as many seasons in North America. His teams have advanced to at least the league semifinals in five of his six seasons, and he helped Orlando to the 1999 Turner Cup Finals, where the Solar Bears fell to the Aeros. Counting last season in Russia, Murphy has played in 299 of his teams possible 300 games (99.7 percent) over the past four seasons. The lone game he has missed since 2001-02 was Opening Night, October 10, 2003, to attend the funeral of former teammate Dan Snyder. Murphy made his NHL debut his only NHL contest December 15, 2002, with the Wild against the Carolina Hurricanes at Xcel Energy Center.
Tetarenko, 27, (3/3/78) totaled one assist and 49 penalty minutes in 15 games with the Aeros in 2004-05, joining the team in mid-February. Tetarenko, a 6-foot-2, 215-pound native of Prince Albert, Sask., has AHL totals of 61 points (15-46=61) and 734 penalty minutes in 287 AHL games, having also played for New Haven, Louisville, San Antonio, Binghamton and Lowell. Tetarenko has five points (4-1=5) and 176 penalty minutes in 73 career NHL games with Florida and Ottawa. He made his NHL debut October 27, 2000, for Florida at Nashville. The eighth-year pro is of Native American (Metis) descent.
I wasnt playing last year and Minnesota gave me an opportunity to come to Houston, Tetarenko said. Houston is a city I enjoyed. Its an organization that gave me the chance to play. They offered me another contract and I was more than happy to take it, no matter if Im in Minnesota or Houston. Im having a great time down here.
Tetarenko suffered a facial injury Easter Sunday and played sparingly after. It has finished healing, and there are no repercussions, he said. Im looking forward to getting visor off and playing aggressive and physical again.
If Joey is not playing for the Wild, Houston will have one of the top leaders in the American Hockey League and a person who other teams hate to come up against, Lynn said.
Wanvig, 24 (1/29/81), skated in 76 games with the Aeros last season and totaled 30 points (13-17=30) including a career-high 17 assists and 158 penalty minutes. The 6-foot-2, 219-pound forward ranked tied for first on the team with seven power play goals and four game-winning tallies and third in PIM. Wanvig led Houston in scoring during the 2003-04 campaign with 25 goals and 41 points in 72 contests and was named to the AHL All-Star Team. He also led the club with 10 power play goals and seven game-winning markers. The Calgary, Alta., native was a member of the Aeros' 2003 Calder Cup winning team and has appeared in 13 career NHL contests with Minnesota. He made his NHL debut on November 25, 2002 against Vancouver and registered his first career NHL goal on December 17, 2002 against Edmonton.
Wanvig was selected by Minnesota in the second round (36th overall) of the 2001 NHL Entry Draft. He re-entered the 2001 NHL Entry Draft after being selected by Boston in the third round (89th overall) of the 1999 NHL Entry Draft. Sound off on these signings
for Friday's edition of SummerScribes.
---HOUSTON AEROS, BE A FAN---