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Dainius Zubrus
Dainus zubrus.png
Born June 16, 1978 (1978-06-16) (age 41)
Elektrenai, Lithuanian, SSR, URS
Height 6 ft 5 in (1.96 m)
Weight 225 lb (102 kg; 16 st 1 lb)
Position Right Wing
Shoots Left
NHL team
Former teams
San Jose Sharks
Philadelphia Flyers
Montreal Canadiens
Washington Capitals
Buffalo Sabres
New Jersey Devils
National team Template:Country data LTU &
Template:Country data RUS
NHL Draft 15th overall, 1996
Philadelphia Flyers
Playing career 1996–present

Dainius Zubrus (born Dainius Gintas Zubrus on June 16, 1978) is a Lithuanian professional ice hockey right winger and center currently playing for the San Jose Sharks of the National Hockey League (NHL).

He is the first Lithuanian to have played 1000 games in the NHL.

Playing CareerEdit

Early Playing CareerEdit

In the summer of 1989, Dainius moved to Kharkiv, Ukraine to train under Ivan Pravilov on the Druzhba-78 squad. He continued to develop his play there until the end of 1995. Just like Darius Kasparaitis, he trained with Aleksey Nikiforov.

Professional Playing CareerEdit

Dainius was drafted 15th overall in the 1996 NHL Entry Draft by the Philadelphia Flyers from the Caledon Canadians of the Metro Junior A Hockey League.

As of the 2006 draft, Dainius was the highest drafted Tier II Junior "A" player since the Canadian Junior A Hockey League's 1993 inception (since surpassed by Kyle Turris at 2007 NHL Entry Draft). Prior to being traded to Caledon, he played for the Pembroke Lumber Kings of the Central Junior A Hockey League.

On October 5, 1996 he made his NHL debut, scoring a goal against the Florida Panthers. In his rookie season, he helped the Flyers reach the 1997 Stanley Cup Finals.

On March 10, 1998, the Flyers traded Dainius to the Montreal Canadiens with a pair of draft picks for Mark Recchi. He registered his first career hat-trick on October 14, 2000, against the Chicago Blackhawks, and was traded by the Canadiens to the Washington Capitals along with Trevor Linden for Richard Zednik & Jan Bulis on March 13, 2001.

During the 2004-05 NHL lockout, Dainius decided to play abroad with Washington Capitals teammate Alexander Semin. He played 42 regular season games for HC Lada Togliatti, tallying 19 points on eight goals and 11 assists. He also appeared in ten playoff games while in the former Russian Superleague (RSL), scoring three goals and one assist.

Dainius returned to the Capitals the following 2005–06 season and posted a career-high 57 points playing alongside star rookie Alexander Ovechkin.

In the 2006–07 season, he continued his impressive form posting 52 points in 60 games before he was traded to the Buffalo Sabres (along with Timo Helbling) for Jiri Novotny and a first round draft pick on February 27, 2007.

On July 3, 2007, Dainius signed a six-year, $20.4 million contract with the New Jersey Devils as a free agent.

On November 23, 2008, he had one of the best offensive games in Devils history. Zubrus tied a team record with four goals to help New Jersey win its season-high fourth straight game, 7–3 over the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Four years later, Dainius got to his second Stanley Cup decision, losing the 2012 finals to the Los Angeles Kings.

On July 29, 2015, after 8 seasons with the Devils, he was placed on unconditional waivers for the purpose of terminating the final year of his contract.

On October 27, 2015, it was announced that Dainius was invited to Professional Tryout (PTO) with the St. Louis Blues. However, on November 6, 2015, he was released from his Professional Tryout after Blues decided to sign Martin Havlat to a one-year deal.

On November 16, 2015, Dainius was invited to a professional tryout by the San Jose Sharks. Eight days later, he signed a contract with the Sharks, reuniting with former Devils coach Peter DeBoer. He got to his third Stanley Cup final with the Sharks.

Career StatisticsEdit

Regular season Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
1995–96 Pembroke Lumber Kings CJHL 28 19 13 32 73
1995–96 Caledon Canadians MTJHL 7 3 7 10 2 17 11 12 23 4
1996–97 Philadelphia Flyers NHL 68 8 13 21 22 19 5 4 9 12
1997–98 Philadelphia Flyers NHL 69 8 25 33 42 5 0 1 1 2
1998–99 Philadelphia Flyers NHL 63 3 5 8 25
1998–99 Montreal Canadiens NHL 17 3 5 8 4
1999–00 Montreal Canadiens NHL 73 14 28 42 54
2000–01 Montreal Canadiens NHL 49 12 12 24 30
2000–01 Washington Capitals NHL 12 1 1 2 7 6 0 0 0 2
2001–02 Washington Capitals NHL 71 17 26 43 38
2002–03 Washington Capitals NHL 63 13 22 35 43 6 2 2 4 4
2003–04 Washington Capitals NHL 54 12 15 27 38
2004–05 Lada Togliatti RSL 42 8 11 19 85 10 3 1 4 22
2005–06 Washington Capitals NHL 71 23 34 57 84
2006–07 Washington Capitals NHL 60 20 32 52 50
2006–07 Buffalo Sabres NHL 19 4 4 8 12 15 0 8 8 8
2007–08 New Jersey Devils NHL 82 13 25 38 38 5 0 1 1 8
2008–09 New Jersey Devils NHL 82 15 25 40 69 7 0 1 1 10
2009–10 New Jersey Devils NHL 51 10 17 27 28 5 1 0 1 8
2010–11 New Jersey Devils NHL 79 13 17 30 53
2011–12 New Jersey Devils NHL 82 17 27 44 34 24 3 7 10 18
2012–13 New Jersey Devils NHL 22 2 7 9 12
2013–14 New Jersey Devils NHL 82 13 13 26 46
2014–15 New Jersey Devils NHL 74 4 6 10 42
2015–16 San Jose Sharks NHL 50 3 4 7 20 14 1 1 2 6
NHL totals 1293 228 363 591 791 106 12 25 37 78

International PlayEdit

Originally, Dainius had suited up for the Russian national team during the World Cup of Hockey in 2004, but since then, he has played internationally for Lithuania, most notably in the 2005 World Championships. He had told the press that, "Lithuania needs me more than Russia."

Because of the existence of the Soviet Union, players born during its time as a nation were able to choose to play for any of the newly formed countries after the breakup and even considered representing Ukraine due to his training there.

Dainius now plans to represent Lithuania in all of his future international hockey appearances.

Personal LifeEdit

Dainius is married to Canadian model Nathalie Sanschagrin and they have two children: a son named Thomas and a daughter named Emma.

He holds dual nationality and is a citizen of Lithuania and the United States.

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