Cleary out, Mursak to make NHL debut
Forward to become just the second Slovenian to play in league
Mursak, 22, is expected to make his NHL debut tonight when the Red Wings visit Colorado at 9 p.m. EST. He replaces Danny Cleary, who on Sunday suffered a fractured left ankle in Minnesota, and is expected to miss the next four weeks.
Mursak will become just the second native of Slovenia to ever play in the NHL, joining Los Angeles Kings center Anze Kopitar, as well as the 112th Griffins' alumnus to skate in the league.
Through 33 games with the Griffins this season, Mursak ranks among the team’s leaders with 10 goals (3rd), 13 assists (T5th), 23 points (4th), a plus-eight rating (5th), three power play goals (T2nd), two shorthanded goals (1st) and two game-winning goals (T1st).
Now in his third pro season with Grand Rapids, Mursak has totaled 74 points and 100 penalty minutes in 163 contests. He enjoyed a breakout campaign in 2009-10, tallying 42 points (24-18—42) in 79 games to record the largest-ever percentage increase in goals scored by a Griffin from one season to the next (1,100%), after notching two goals during his rookie season in '08-09. In addition, his 0.173 shooting percentage last season was the seventh-highest single-season mark in franchise history.