ATLANTA (AP) -The Thrashers placed goalie Kari Lehtonen on the injured list Friday after he hurt his groin in Atlanta's first win of the season.
The previous night, Lehtonen left a 5-3 victory over the New York Rangers with 8 1/2 minutes left in the first period. The team said he strained his groin, but in a different area than a similar injury that kept him out for more than two months in 2005.
``Certainly, he'll be out a while,'' said general manager Don Waddell, who also is serving as Atlanta's interim coach.
Johan Hedberg will take over as the No. 1 goalie, and Atlanta called up 20-year-old Ondrej Pavalec from its American Hockey League farm club in Chicago. He was a second-round pick in the 2005 draft and turned pro this season, winning his first two starts for the Wolves. He had a 1.49 goals-against average and .935 save percentage.
The Thrashers also have former NHL goalie Fred Brathwaite at Chicago.
``You hate to see a goalie ever get hurt,'' Waddell said. ``But we're very fortunate to have other goalies who can come up.''
The Thrashers (1-6) play next at Tampa Bay on Saturday, beginning a seven-game road stretch.
Lehtonen played only 38 games in the 2005-06 season, missing 2 1/2 months because of a groin injury. He passed up a chance to play for his native Finland in the 2006 Turin Olympics and trained extensively the next summer to build up his muscles.
Last season, Lehtonen played a career-high 68 games for the Thrashers, helping them win the Southeast Division and make the playoffs for the first time. He was off to a slow start this season along with the rest of the struggling team: 0-4 with a 4.49 goals-against and .879 save percentage in five games.

NHL Top Stories

Thumbnail Blackhawks vs. Panthers Prediction Are the Blackhawks a good bet to beat the Panthers tonight when the two clash at 7:00PM ET?
Thumbnail Stars vs. Sharks Prediction Will the Dallas Stars pull off the upset tonight as a home underdog versus the San Jose Sharks at 8:30PM ET?
Thumbnail Hosts still pushing for playoff spot   Maple Leafs rookie Auston Matthews snapped a seven-game goalless drought when he potted his 32nd marker of the season Saturday. Can Ontario’s darling carry that...
Thumbnail Laine, visitors aim to extend Minny's skid   A season that started so promisingly for the Wild is spinning out of control down the stretch. Can Bruce Boudreau’s troops find a way to right themselves...
Thumbnail Defending champs overcoming health issues Washington’s recent slide has provided a glimmer of hope for Pittsburgh in the Metropolitan Division race. But can the Pens avoid a letdown tonight against...

NHL Team Pages