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Sean Avery's Suspension Is Over, but Dallas Won't Be Taking Him Back

Dec 14, 2008 – 11:30 AM
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Adam Gretz

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When the Dallas Stars host Phoenix on Tuesday night, forward Sean Avery will be eligible to return from his six-game suspension for making some off-color comments about former girlfriend Elisha Cuthbert, and her current squeeze, Dion Phaneuf of the Calgary Flames. It was quite the story for a while, and the Stars have decided they no longer want anything to do with it, or their big offseason acquisition, as they announced today that Avery will not be returning to the team.

TSN has the story, including comments from Stars co-general manager, Brett Hull:
"Sean needs to focus on his own well-being while the Stars hockey team must focus on playing hockey and competing for a playoff spot," said Stars Co-General Manager Brett Hull. "Everyone understands that Sean will not return to the Dallas Stars. We all need to move forward."
So this was the straw that finally broke the camel's back for Avery -- a sex joke. A stupid one, of course. And one that you might be more likely to hear in a high school cafeteria, but a sex joke nonetheless.

According to the TSN report, the Stars will continue to honor Avery's contract, which was a four-year, $15.5 million deal signed on July 2, 2008.

I thought the NHL was a bit over the top in its suspension of Avery. You don't get that much of a punishment for potentially ending a career with a vicious hit from behind into the boards.

Still, I have no problem with the Stars as an organization stepping in and not welcoming Avery back, or, attempting to cut ties with him all together. They signed him, they can deal with him as they see fit. Though, they should have known what they were getting when they signed him for four years.

Avery's on-ice and off-ice exploits are well documented, and he's no stranger to controversy. I'm just a little surprised that this is what, ultimately, was his downfall in the NHL. Then again, maybe I shouldn't be.

The 28-year-old Avery registered three goals and seven assists in 23 games for the Stars this season.
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