McCarty Enters Substance Abuse Program

Detroit Red Wings forward Darren McCarty issued a statment Friday apologizing for his absence from his annual charity golf tournament, citing his long-running battle with substance abuse.

“For the past seven years, I have actively fought a substance abuse issue,” McCarty said in a statement on the TSN web site. “While most people do not recognize that this personal challenge exists on a day-to-day basis, it is an ongoing concern I will carry for the rest of my entire life.

“This offseason, it became apparent to me that my efforts required additional attention,” he said. “I wanted to address the issue before the upcoming season and voluntarily began a maintenance program three weeks ago.”

McCarty’s battle with alcoholism is no secret. He discussed his efforts against the disease in the book Rinkside: A Family’s Story of Courage & Inspiration, written by his late father, Craig McCarty.

McCarty signed a four-year contract with the Red Wings in July. He has spent his entire pro career with the Detroit organization.

Wings Sign Miller, Lose Boileau

The Detroit Red Wings announced Wednesday the signing of Lansing native Kevin Miller to a one-year deal. Miller is likely to spend the season with Detroit’s AHL affiliate, the Grand Rapids Griffins.

Miller is a veteran of both the Red Wings and Griffins, having captained Grand Rapids to the 2000 Turner Cup Finals and played for Detroit in the early 1990s. He also played college hockey at Michigan State University.

Playing for Davos of the Swiss National League in 2002-2003, Miller led his team in scoring with 38 points in 44 games. Miller spent the last three years with Davos.

He gives the Red Wings a veteran player to call up if needed.

While Miller was added to the Red Wings system, defenseman Patrick Boileau was lost.

Boileau signed with the Pittsburgh Penguins after spending one year in the Detroit organization. He split 2002-2003 between the Red Wings and Griffins, playing 25 games with Detroit and recording 13 points.

Finally Official: Yzerman Re-signs

The Detroit Red Wings re-signed longtime captain Steve Yzerman to a one-year deal on Monday, after the parties had agreed in principle to terms over a month ago.

Reportedly, the deal will pay Yzerman a base salary of $6 million, with an additional $2 million available in performance-based bonuses.

“We are all very pleased to have Steve back in the fold for one more year,” Red Wings general manager Ken Holland said in a release. “He brings a great deal of dedication, skill and leadership abilities to our hockey club, and I feel his competitive nature will greatly help this team remain successful throughout the upcoming season.”

Yzerman was the youngest captain in NHL history when the Red Wings gave him the “C” in 1986. He is the longest-serving captain in NHL history.

Yzerman has spent his entire career with the Red Wings.

After recovering from an offseason osteotomy – a revolutionary knee realignment procedure never-before performed on a professional athlete – Yzerman played in sixteen games for the Red Wings last season. He tallied two goals and sixteen assists. His career totals now sit at 660 goals and 1,010 assists in 1,378 games played.

Yzerman was selected fourth-overall by Detroit in the 1983 NHL Entry Draft.

Joseph Undergoes Surgery on Injured Ankle

A report in the Toronto Sun says Detroit Red Wings goaltender Curtis Joseph has undergone surgery for an ankle injury. The revelation comes as rumors about a possible trade between the Red Wings and the Boston Bruins have heated up.

The Red Wings have been looking to trade Joseph since early July, when Dominik Hasek announced his return to the Red Wings after a year of retirement. Joseph was signed by Detroit in July 2002 to replace the retiring Hasek.

With the departure of All-Star center Sergei Fedorov via free agency, the Wings have been looking to pick up a center in return for Joseph. Trade talks will likely be put on hold due to Joseph’s injury, but it is uncertain for how long.

The original Sun report stated that Joseph would be out until January, the midway point of the season. A statement released by the Red Wings denies that the injury is that bad, and says that the goaltender is expected to be able to skate in six weeks.

No Charges Pressed Against Hasek

Detroit Red Wings goaltender Dominik Hasek escaped having charges pressed against him for a fight during an inline hockey game in the Czech Rebublic, a Czech court official announced Friday.

According to eyewitness testimony, Hasek, skating as a defender for Bonfire Strida, checked SK Pardubice’s Martin Sila to the ground. Hasek then sat on Sila and hit him on the neck with his stick. Sila was hosiptalized for three days following the incident.

After a lengthy investigation, police recommended that Hasek be charged with inflicting bodily harm, a crime punishable by up to eight years in prison.

Prosecutor Lenka Strnadova determined that there was no evidence that Hasek caused bodily harm to Sila during the May 18 match in Hasek’s hometown of Pardubice.

“Criminal charges will not be pressed,” Strnadova told The Associated Press.

Strnadova did not explain how she had reached the conclusion that Hasek did not cause any harm to Sila.

Hasek has denied any wrongdoing since the incident. Pavel Jelinek, Hasek’s lawyer, said in a statement that media reports about the incident were exaggerated.

“In fact, Mr. Sila did not have any fractures, not a broken nose, no teeth knocked out, no cuts, not a single scratch or bruise,” Jelinek said.

Sila can appeal Strnadova’s decision by asking it be overruled by the country’s supreme prosecutor.

After the incident, Hasek was suspended from the Czech inline league for one year.

In July, Hasek shocked hockey fans worldwide by announcing his intention to return to the Red Wings, the NHL team he retired from after winning the Stanley Cup with them in 2002.