One day after clearing waivers, the Dallas Stars have assigned winger Sean Avery to the Hartford Wolf Pack, the AHL affiliate of the New York Rangers.
Avery is already in Hartford along with the Rangers' media relations representatives to help deal with the expected attention Avery will draw. He is expected to skate with the team this morning. The Wolf Pack host the Manitoba Moose on Wednesday but Avery will not be in the lineup.
"I would like to thank Glen Sather and the Rangers organization for giving me the chance to resume my hockey career by affording me this opportunity with the Hartford Wolf Pack," Avery said in a prepared statement Tuesday. "I am looking forward to getting back on the ice, working my way back to the NHL and playing the game I love. While I appreciate the many interview requests, at this point in time, I would like to focus on hockey and will not be making any further statements while with the Wolf Pack."
Sather also made a statement, alluding to Avery's past success with the Rangers and his determination to get back to the NHL.
"Sean and the Dallas Stars approached me looking for an American Hockey League team for him to resume playing, and I am happy to provide him with the opportunity to continue his career," Sather said. "Sean was a good player for the Rangers during his time here and has worked extremely hard off the ice over the last two months."
Stars' owner Tom Hicks told a Toronto radio station that he wished Avery well but made it clear he was not welcome back with his organization.
"We're happy for Sean. He's been working hard to take care of some of the issues he's had," Hicks told AM 640 Radio on Monday. "Our plans are to find him a place in the AHL where he can play and show his hockey skills and maybe there will be another team in the league that might want to pick him up. But he's not going to a part of the Dallas Stars."
Avery was suspended for six games by the NHL due to inappropriate comments he made back in November. He has not played since that time and has been in the NHL/NHLPA behavioral health program.