Posts tagged “Greg Johnson”

Greg Johnson Retires

Due to his heart ailment, Greg Johnson has retired from the NHL. I don’t want to blame Ken Holland too much on this one, other than the fact that a physical could’ve been demanded prior to signing him. And catching the ailment before signing him would’ve allowed the Wings the cap space to go out and get a young forward. Obviously this is all in hindsight and neither Johnson nor Holland saw this coming. Enjoy your retirement, Greg, and I hope your condition improves.

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Bob McKenzie: Johnson may retire

“Sources say Johnson may soon have to announce his retirement, but he is seeking secondary medical opinions to be sure.”

I don’t see how any doctor could clear him to play if another told him he couldn’t. I’ve been skeptical of the whole Johnson deal all along but in reality, he would have been helpful to have (I’m still not convinced he was the best acquistion the Wings could have made but anyway…) so it’s a shame they would have his servises. The good news, though, is that his condition was noticed before another Fischer-like incident took place.

Update (7:56 PM): According to Ansar Khan, Johnson didn’t just go to any old Detroit heart clinic. It was the Mayo Clinic that didn’t clear him. Good luck finding a contrary opinion, Greg.

Khan also has more on the forwards situation so his blog post is worth a read.

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Blast From the Past: Wings Sign Greg Johnson to Second Stint

Ken Holland is bringing together the Wings of old. Greg Johnson, 35, is back. Yes, that’s the Greg Johnson of 10 years ago, who was traded to Pittsburgh midway through the ’96-’97 season (just missing a Cup run) for Tomas Sandstrom. A horrible trade, it turned out. Sandstrom went 20 games in the playoffs with only 4 assists, and lacked the offensive punch seen earlier in his career. We hated Sandstrom back then, and wanted Greg Johnson back.

Well, Holland brought our old friend back. He’s put up some decent seasons, and has been a pretty consistent 10 goal, 20 assist player – that is, when injuries don’t plague him. Last season, he went 11 goals, 8 assists through 68 games, missing time with a groin strain.

My first reaction to this move was thumbs up. Johnson is speedy, and could be a great playmaker on a team like the Wings. Also, his TSN profile says he is good at killing penalties and taking faceoffs. But then I look at his age and what happened to him last season. If he stays healthy, this could be a great move. But, if a groin injury creeps up, it could mess up his entire season. I’m disappointed Holland hasn’t been able to sign more players outside the organization (second, third stints not included).

I give Holland credit for being creative and probably getting a bargain forward who can play fourth line center for the Wings. But I’d rather have seen the Wings go out and get a guy with more offensive potential: Bondra, Nolan, Carter, Dumont, etc. Johnson replaces Franzen (if necessary), and still leaves the need to fill in for Shanahan’s production. I’m still waiting…

UPDATED (8/15 11:03 am)

Greg Johnson’s base salary for 2006-2007 will be $500,000 via the NHLPA site, with I’m sure some performance-based incentives included.