Sunday, July 18, 2004

7/18 NHL Notes

Heatley Indicted

Atlanta Thrasher Dany Heatley has been indicted on six charges, stemming from the September car crash that killed teammate Dan Snyder. Heatley crashed his Ferrari into a brick pillar. Charges include vehicular homicide in the first degree, vehicular homicide in the second degree, reckless driving, driving too fast for conditions, failure to maintain his lane, and speeding. The NHL All Star faces up to 20 years in prison if convicted on all counts, but Heatley could get off with only probation. The one thing working in his favor is that the Snyder family has publicly forgiven Heatley, and they could work towards getting him off scot-free. Although the family has released a statement saying:

"Our feelings have never changed and we continue to support Dany and the entire Heatley family. Despite our personal feelings in this matter, we respect the responsibility of the district attorney's office and the legal process."

Snyder died on Ocober 5, 2003, after sustaining massive head trauma in the high-speed accident. He was ejected 30 feet from the Ferrari.

Heatley also suffered serious injuries, including a broken jaw, minor concussion, bruised lung and kidney, torn medial collateral and anterior cruciate ligaments, as well as lateral meniscus. He missed a bulk of the 2003-2004 season rehabilitating from his injuries.

Heatley was named a member of Team Canada for the World Cup of Hockey, which takes place from August 30 to September 14.

Danton Pleads Guilty

Mike Danton pleaded guilty to a murder-for-hire conspiracy charge on Friday. The former St Louis Blues player faces 7 to 10 years in prison (as well as up to $250,000 fines) when he is sentenced on October 22. After months of media coverage where his agent, David Frost, defended his longtime associate, it is now clear that Danton was seeking to murder Frost. Danton made the plea as a part of a deal that had the charge of making a telephone call in connection with a murder-for-hire plot dropped. Native of Ontario, US prosecutors will allow Danton to serve his prison time in Canada. Danton has been jailed since his April 16 arrest in San Jose. Datsyuk Waves Arbitration After speculation that Pavel Datsyuk would file for arbitration (with the deadline midnight Thursday), the Russian All Star has decided to continue with negotiations. This comes after a breakout season in which Datsyuk racked up 30 goals and 38 assists. His agent, Gary Greenstin, explains:
"I explained to him how arbitration works. He doesn't want to go through the process. He believes he'll get a good deal because he's proven everything to the Detroit Red Wings organization. We have to make a deal by Sept. 16."
This is good news, as arbitration hearings pit player against management, and often turn into bitter and divisive battles. Datsyuk has previously stated his desire to remain a Red Wing, and this move to avoid arbitration affirms that.


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