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James Wisniewski
JWisniewski.jpg
Born February 21, 1984 (1984-02-21) (age 33)
Canton, Michigan
Height 5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)
Weight 205 lb (93 kg; 14 st 9 lb)
Position Defense
Shoots Right
NHL team
Former teams
Carolina Hurricanes
Chicago Blackhawks
Anaheim Ducks
New York Islanders
Montreal Canadiens
Columbus Blue Jackets
National team Flag of the United States.svg United States
NHL Draft 156th overall, 2002
Chicago Blackhawks
Playing career 2004–present

James Wisniewski (born James Joseph Wisniewski on February 21, 1984) is an American professional ice hockey defenseman currently playing for the Carolina Hurricanes of the National Hockey League (NHL).

James has previously played for the Chicago Blackhawks, Anaheim Ducks, New York Islanders, Montreal Canadiens and the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Playing CareerEdit

Early Playing CareerEdit

James started his junior hockey career with his hometown Plymouth Whalers of the OHL in 2000. He improved every year significantly and was drafted in the 5th round by the Blackhawks in 2002.

At the start of the 2003–04 season, James was named captain of the Whalers. Wielding powerful arms and an incredible desire to win, his rocket slap-shot (good for 17 goals, 11 on the power-play). He arguably has one of the best defensive shots in the NHL.

James finished 24th in overall scoring with 70 points, but 3rd among defenseman, short 6 points of Kingston Frontenacs defenseman Bryan Rodney, however, he only played in 17 fewer games, playing in only 50 to Rodney's 67 (in a 68-game season).

For his work, James was awarded the OHL's 2004 Max Kaminsky Trophy as most outstanding defenceman. The accolades didn't stop there as he also took home the parent league, CHL's Defenseman of the Year award.

This recognition gained James a contract with Chicago, and a jump to the AHL's Norfolk Admirals.

Chicago BlackhawksEdit

James was called up early to the Blackhawks in the 2006–07 season and stuck with the Blackhawks.

On March 5, 2007, he tore his ACL during the 1st period against the Los Angeles Kings. James was placed on injured reserve and missed the rest of the season.

Anaheim DucksEdit

On March 4, 2009, James was traded by the Blackhawks along with Petri Kontiola to the Anaheim Ducks in exchange for Samuel Pahlsson and Logan Stephenson.

In the 2009–10 season, James entrenched himself in the Ducks defense corps and established a career-high 30 points in 69 games.

On March 17, 2010 in a game against former team, the Chicago Blackhawks, James delivered a retaliation hit to Brent Seabrook (his former teammate and good friend) driving his head against the glass.

James received an eight-game suspension for his hit. The last player to receive an eight-game suspension was former Duck Chris Pronger.

New York IslandersEdit

On July 30, 2010, James was traded by the Ducks to the New York Islanders for a conditional 3rd-round pick in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft.

On October 12, 2010, he was suspended for two games for making an obscene gesture towards Sean Avery.

Montreal CanadiensEdit

On December 28, 2010, James was traded to the Montreal Canadiens for second-round pick in the 2011 draft and conditional 5th round pick in the 2012 draft.

He scored seven goals to go with 23 assists in 43 games with the Canadiens as well as two assists in six playoff games.

Columbus Blue JacketsEdit

On June 29, 2011, James's rights were traded to the Columbus Blue Jackets in exchange for a conditional seventh-round draft pick in 2012. The pick would become a fifth-rounder if Columbus signed him.

On July 1, 2011, James signed a 6-year/$33 million contract with the Blue Jackets.

On September 26, 2011, James was suspended for the remainder of the preseason and 8 regular season games by the NHL for a hit to the head of Cal Clutterbuck on September 23, 2011 after the end of regulation.

In an injury shortened 2011-12 NHL season, James appeared in 48 games with Columbus, scoring six goals along with 21 assists as the Blue Jackets finished well out of the playoff hunt.

Carolina HurricanesEdit

On June 27, 2015, the second day of the 2015 NHL Entry Draft, James was traded to the Carolina Hurricanes in exchange for Anton Khudobin.

In his first game with the Hurricanes, he took a hit after just 47 seconds of ice time and suffered a tear to his left ACL, effectively ending his season on opening night.

Career StatisticsEdit

Regular season and playoffsEdit

Regular season Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
2000–01 Plymouth Whalers OHL 53 6 23 29 72 19 3 10 13 34
2001–02 Plymouth Whalers OHL 62 11 25 36 100 6 1 2 3 6
2002–03 Plymouth Whalers OHL 52 18 34 52 60 18 2 10 12 14
2003–04 Plymouth Whalers OHL 50 17 53 70 63 9 3 7 10 8
2004–05 Norfolk Admirals AHL 66 7 18 25 110 5 1 3 4 2
2005–06 Norfolk Admirals AHL 61 7 28 35 67 4 1 2 3 6
2005–06 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 19 2 5 7 36
2006–07 Norfolk Admirals AHL 10 0 6 6 8
2006–07 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 50 2 8 10 39
2007–08 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 68 7 19 26 103
2008–09 Rockford IceHogs AHL 2 3 1 4 0
2008–09 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 31 2 11 13 14
2008–09 Anaheim Ducks NHL 17 1 10 11 16 12 1 2 3 10
2009–10 Anaheim Ducks NHL 69 3 27 30 56
2010–11 New York Islanders NHL 32 3 18 21 18
2010–11 Montreal Canadiens NHL 43 7 23 30 20 6 0 2 2 7
2011–12 Columbus Blue Jackets NHL 48 6 21 27 37
2012–13 Columbus Blue Jackets NHL 30 5 9 14 15
2013–14 Columbus Blue Jackets NHL 75 7 44 51 61 6 0 2 2 10
2014–15 Columbus Blue Jackets NHL 56 8 21 29 34
2014–15 Anaheim Ducks NHL 13 0 5 5 10
NHL totals 551 53 221 274 459 24 1 6 7 27

International StatisticsEdit

Year Team Event Result GP G A Pts PIM
2002 United States WJC18 Template:Goca 3 1 2 3 6
2003 United States WJC 4th 7 0 4 4 6
2004 United States WJC Template:Goca 6 2 3 5 4
2008 United States WC 6th 6 1 2 3 6
Junior totals 16 3 9 12 16
Senior totals 6 1 2 3 6

International PlayEdit

Medal record
Competitor for Flag of the United States.svg United States
Ice hockey
World Junior Championships
Gold 2004 Helsinki
World U18 Championships
Gold 2002 Trnava

Awards & AchievementsEdit

  • 2000–01 OHL First All-Rookie Team
  • 2003–04 OHL First All-Star Team
  • 2003–04 OHL Max Kaminsky Trophy
  • 2003–04 CHL First All-Star Team
  • 2003–04 CHL Defenceman of the Year

Personal LifeEdit

James has a Polish background. He is the nephew of former NHL player & coach Billy Dea. Both of his grandfathers fought in World War II. James attended Canton High School in Canton, Michigan.

James started a clothing line called WizWear. According to him: "I always like to dress nice and have my own style. We support the USO of Illinois, the families of fallen soldiers. I wanted to do something a little bit different to set up for a charity than a golf tournament or bowling event. It's something I can have a little bit of fun with also."

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