January 2, 1981 |
Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, Canada
|Height||6 ft 0 in (183 cm)|
|Weight||213 lb (97 kg; 15 st 3 lb)|
Mighty Ducks of Anaheim
Columbus Blue Jackets
Tampa Bay Lightning
New York Islanders
Zenon Konopka (born January 2, 1981) is a retired Canadian professional ice hockey player. Also known as "Zenon the Destroyer", Konopka played for the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim, Columbus Blue Jackets, Tampa Bay Lightning, New York Islanders, Ottawa Senators, Minnesota Wild, and Buffalo Sabres during his NHL career.
Konopka played junior hockey with the Ottawa 67's of the OHL from 1998 to 2002, and was a member of the 1999 Memorial Cup champions. He was not drafted by a NHL team and caught on with the Wheeling Nailers of the ECHL. After three minor league seasons with various teams in the ECHL and AHL, he made his NHL debut in 2005–2006, playing 23 games for the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim. After the Ducks were eliminated, he returned to Portland in the AHL, where he led all playoff scorers in power play goals and assists. In 2006–07, he returned to the minors, playing for Portland in the AHL. On January 26, 2007, he was traded by the Anaheim Ducks along with Curtis Glencross and a draft pick to the Blue Jackets in exchange for forwards Mark Hartigan, Joe Motzko and a draft pick. He played for Columbus's farm team in the AHL, the Syracuse Crunch, with occasional call-ups to the Blue Jackets.
On July 10, 2008, Konopka signed a two year-contract with the Tampa Bay Lightning as a free agent. In 2009, after a strong training camp, Konopka made the Lightning's roster out of training camp. On July 2, 2010, he signed with the New York Islanders as an unrestricted free agent.
On July 5, 2011, Konopka signed a one-year contract with the Ottawa Senators. During the 2012 Stanley Cup playoffs, Konopka directed verbal abuse towards a New York Rangers player during a live television interview. Konopka was fined $2,500 by the NHL.
On January 3, 2014, Konopka was claimed off waivers by the Buffalo Sabres, with whom he remained until the end of the season.
On May 15, 2014 Konopka was suspended for 20 games following violation of the NHL/NHLPA Performance Enhancing Substances Program after taking dehydroepiandrosterone on a doctor's suggestion. His contract with the Sabres expired July 1, during the suspension.
On January 30, 2015, Konopka signed with Ciarko PBS Bank KH Sanok of the PHL in Poland. As of June 2015, he was on tour with other professional journeymen hockey players in Australia. He plans on returning to North America after the tour ends in the hopes of returning to the NHL or, if unable to do that, an American minor league.
On April 1, 2017, Konopka officially retired from hockey when he signed a one-day contract with the Syracuse Crunch to close out his career. Konopka had previously served a captain of Syracuse, and is considered one of the more popular players in team history. Before the game there was a pregame ceremony featuring a video from his former teammates and the presentation of a lifetime key to the Crowne Plaza Syracuse.
Zenon Konopka is also an entrepreneur and owner of a company Prime Wine Products and partners with local charities to help children's programs. Konopka also owns and operates Konopka Co-Packing, a packaging company that employs over 20 workers. He was once part-owner in an Ottawa bar-restaurant called "Stout Bros." and has run the "Zenon Konopka Hockey Academy" in Ottawa since 2007.
He also has a black pet rabbit, Hoppy, and maintains an Instagram and a Twitter account  for his pet, who has relocated with him since 2006. Konopka told Fox Sports North that he never wanted a rabbit as a child, but a friend suggested one as Konopka is allergic to cats and dogs. "I can't help that I fell in love with the little guy ... the guy's pretty cool. He just chills around, has his litter box, does his business there and he's pretty soothing to come home to." Zenon also has a specially made hockey jersey made for Hoppy for each team he plays for.
Konopka is of Polish descent. His father was born in Poland. His mother is a native of Buffalo, New York. Konopka's sister, Cynthia, sang the national anthems at Scotiabank Place before the Senators' game on January 16, 2012.
|2004–05||Cincinnati Mighty Ducks||AHL||75||17||29||46||212||12||3||3||6||26|
|2005–06||Mighty Ducks of Anaheim||NHL||23||4||3||7||48||—||—||—||—||—|
|2006–07||Columbus Blue Jackets||NHL||6||0||0||0||20||—||—||—||—||—|
|2007–08||Columbus Blue Jackets||NHL||3||0||0||0||15||—||—||—||—||—|
|2008–09||Tampa Bay Lightning||NHL||7||0||1||1||29||—||—||—||—||—|
|2009–10||Tampa Bay Lightning||NHL||74||2||3||5||265||—||—||—||—||—|
|2010–11||New York Islanders||NHL||82||2||7||9||307||—||—||—||—||—|
- Strang, Katie. "Sens fined $10K for 'verbal abuse'". espn.go.com. April 16, 2012. Retrieved April 16, 2012.
- Konopka's Wild ride http://slam.canoe.ca/Slam/Hockey/NHL/Minnesota/2012/07/06/19960671.html
- "Buffalo Sabres' Zenon Konopka suspended 20 games". NHL.com.
- Potrecz, Bill (June 3, 2015). A man for all seasons. St. Catharines Standard. Retrieved June 4, 2015.
- Kramer, Lindsay (April 1, 2017). "Syracuse Crunch signs ex-captain Zenon Konopka (but only for a day)". Syracuse.com. Retrieved June 28, 2017.
- Potrecz, Bill (September 17, 2012). "Konopka goes from enforcer to negotiator". Welland Tribune. Retrieved August 29, 2014.
- Canoe inc. "Are the Senators NHL's toughest team?". canoe.com.
- "Konopka, Senators find 'the right fit' together". nhl.com.
- "Hoppy Konopka". twitter.com.
- http://www.foxsportsnorth.com/nhl/minnesota-wild/story/Konopka-has-embraced-the-bunny-lifestyle?blockID=873977 Konopka Has Embraced the Bunny Lifestyle
- Dave Emke. "Addition of Zenon Konopka Should Be End of John Scott's Time with Buffalo Sabres". Bleacher Report.
- Botta, Christopher (October 5, 2010). "Honoring His Father's War-Torn Life, Zenon Konopka Fights For Every Shift". AOL News. Archived from the original on January 17, 2013.
- Hoppe, Bill (January 3, 2014). Ted Nolan wants Sabres’ youngsters to learn from veteran newcomer Zenon Konopka. Olean Times Herald. Retrieved January 3, 2014.
- http://slam.canoe.ca/Slam/Hockey/NHL/Ottawa/2012/01/07/19214726.html Cheaps: Doing what a guy's gotta do