Legends of Hockey -- NHL Player Search -- Player -- Jozef Balej
Jozef Balej was born February 22, 1982 in Myjava, Slovakia. The third round, 78th overall selection of the Montreal Canadiens in the 2000 NHL Entry Draft, Balej honed his skills in his homeland before coming to North America in 1998-99.

An offensively gifted player, Balej tallied 97 points (57-40-97) with Dukla Trencin of the Slovakia junior league before splitting his first season in North America with Thunder Bay and Rochester of the USHL. In 99-2000, Balej joined the WHL's Portland Winter Hawks and spent the next three seasons as an offensive force with the team. In his three years in Portland, Balej tallied 190 points (105-85-190) and was a WHL West First Team All-Star in 2001-02 before making his professional debut with the AHLs Hamilton Bulldogs in 2002-03.

In 2003-04, Balej spent the majority of the season with Hamilton while making his NHL debut with Montreal before being dealt to the New York Rangers for the highly skilled Alexei Kovalev prior to the trade deadline. Upon his arrival the Rangers, Balej went on to split the remainder of the season between New York and the team's AHL affiliate in Hartford.

Following a lock out year in 2004-05, Balej was acquired by the Vancouver Canucks in the early stages of the 2005-06 season. Balej would split that season with the Canucks and the club's affiliate the Manitoba Moose of the AHL.

REGULAR SEASON PLAYOFFS
Season Club League GP G A TP PIM +/- GP G A TP PIM
1996-97 Dukla Trencin Jr. Slovak-Jr. 51 31 25 56 36
1997-98 Dukla Trencin Jr. Slovak-Jr. 52 57 40 97 60
1998-99 Thunder Bay Flyers USHL 38 8 7 15 9
1998-99 Rochester Mustangs USHL 17 0 1 1 2
1999-00 Portland Winter Hawks WHL 65 22 23 45 33
1999-00 Slovakia WJ18-A 6 0 5 5 4 -1
2000-01 Portland Winter Hawks WHL 46 32 21 53 18 16 9 6 15 6
2000-01 Slovakia WJC-A 7 3 3 6 4 +1
2001-02 Portland Winter Hawks WHL 65 51 41 92 52 +18 7 0 2 2 6
2002-03 Hamilton Bulldogs AHL 56 5 15 20 29
2003-04 Montreal Canadiens NHL 4 0 0 0 0 -1
2003-04 Hamilton Bulldogs AHL 55 25 33 58 32 +19
2003-04 New York Rangers NHL 13 1 4 5 4 0
2003-04 Hartford Wolf Pack AHL 5 1 3 4 21 0 16 9 7 16 10
2004-05 Hartford Wolf Pack AHL 69 20 22 42 46 +2 6 0 0 0 4
2005-06 Vancouver Canucks NHL 1 0 1 1 0 +1
2005-06 Manitoba Moose AHL 39 14 15 29 20 +3 4 1 0 1 4
2006-07 HC Fribourg-Gotteron Swiss 37 13 17 30 44 4 4 1 5 2
2007-08 Manitoba Moose AHL 16 4 9 13 10 -1
2008-09 HC Ocelari Trinec CzRep 39 17 10 27 40 5 3 0 3 2
2009-10 HC Ocelari Trinec CzRep 13 4 5 9 6 5 2 1 3 6
2010-11 HC Kometa Brno CzRep 37 14 10 24 18
2011-12 HC Kometa Brno CzRep 25 2 3 5 12 17 3 1 4 6
2011-12 HC Slovan Bratislava Slovakia 20 5 6 11 8
2012-13 HC Skoda Plzen CzRep 41 15 8 23 16 7 3 2 5 4
2013-14 Pirati Chomutov CzRep 42 9 6 15 16
2013-14 Pirati Chomutov CzRep-Q 3 0 1 1 2
2014-15 HC Skoda Plzen CzRep 47 6 6 12 28 2 0 1 1 0
2015-16 SHK 37 Piestany Slovakia 18 9 6 15 26
2016-17 HC Ambri-Piotta Swiss 1 1 0 1 0
NHL Totals 18 1 5 6 4


WHL West First All-Star Team (2002) Canadian Major Junior Second All-Star Team (2002) Traded to NY Rangers by Montreal with Montreal's 2nd round pick (Bruce Graham) in 2004 NHL Draft for Alex Kovalev, March 2, 2004. Traded to Vancouver by NY Rangers with future consdierations for Fedor Fedorov, October 7, 2005. Signed as a free agent by Fribourg (Swiss), July 24, 2006.
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