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ZEDNIK BETTER AFTER CAROTID NEARLY SEVERED

Panthers forward Richard Zednik lost about five pints of blood, but doctors never considered his life in jeopardy after the player had his carotid artery nearly severed by a teammate's skate in a freak and frightening accident.

Zednik had an hour of surgery to reconnect the artery Sunday night and was listed in stable condition in the intensive care unit at Buffalo General Hospital on Monday. He was awake and cooperative with the medical staff, doctors said.

Attending surgeon Sonya Noor said there were no initial signs of brain damage.

"So far, he looks very good. He's awake, oriented," Noor said. "He remembers what happened."

Zednik, 32, was sliced across the right side of the throat by teammate Olli Jokinen's skate midway through the third period of Buffalo's 5-3 victory.

Doctors said the skate blade just missed the jugular vein. The carotid artery supplies blood to the brain, while the jugular vein takes blood from the brain. Blood pressure is much higher in the carotid artery.

TRADE: Ottawa got forward Cory Stillman and defenseman Mike Commodore from Carolina for forward Patrick Eaves and defenseman Joe Corvo. Hurricanes general manager Jim Rutherford said Stillman, who played on the Lightning's 2003-04 Stanley Cup champion, waived a no-trade clause.

FLYERS: Forward Simon Gagne, out after his third concussion this season, hopes to return before the end of the season. And defenseman Braydon Coburn will miss as long as two weeks with a torn artery in his left buttock, suffered in Saturday's loss to the Rangers.

STARS: Right wing Krys Barch agreed to a two-year, $1.15 million extension through 2009-10.

Two Canadiens jailed

Two Canadiens players were jailed Monday morning after police said one of them stole a woman's purse at a South Tampa night club.

Ryan O'Bryne, a defenseman, was charged with felony grand theft after police said he took a woman's cell phone and purse from the Whiskey Park barabout 3:10 a.m. O'Bryne, 23, told police the items belonged to his girlfriend, but "he could not name whose purse it was," the arrest report said.

Thomas Kostopoulos, a right wing, and several other players were ordered to step away from the cruiser that held O'Bryne. Kostopoulos, 29, left but returned a few minutes later and was arrested on a misdemeanor charge of resisting an officer without violence.

Both men posted bail and were released. Montreal plays at the Lightning tonight.

Times staff writer Casey Cora contributed to this report.

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