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Flyers Danny Biere battles Sabres Thomas Vanek for the puck during second period in Philadelphia.
Philadelphia Flyers center Danny Briere (48) struggles with Buffalo Sabres left wing Thomas Vanek on the boards for control of the puck during second period Philadelphia Flyers-Buffalo Sabres game 5 of their first round playoff series at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia April 22, 2011. UPI/John Anderson
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Thomas Vanek (born January 19, 1984) is an Austrian professional ice hockey left winger, an alternate captain of the Buffalo Sabres of the National Hockey League (NHL). Vanek was drafted by the Sabres fifth overall in the 2003 NHL Entry Draft, making him the highest draft pick in Austrian history.

Vanek was born in Baden bei Wien, Austria, to Slovak mother Jarmila and Czech father Zdeněk, who moved in 1982 from Czechoslovakia to Austria. He grew up in Zell am See (Salzburg) and in Graz (Styria), where his father played professional ice hockey. He moved in 1998, at age 14, to the United States, where he attended and graduated fromO'Gorman High School while playing junior hockey for the Sioux Falls Stampede.

Vanek is married to his long-time girlfriend Ashley. They have a son named Blake Thomas and twin sons. They also have a dog named Diesel.

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License.
It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Thomas Vanek."
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