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National Hockey League
NHL News Wire
  • NHL notebook: Blues lock up D Parayko
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, July 20, 2017

    St. Louis Blues defenseman Colton Parayko signed a five-year, $27.5 million contract on Thursday.

    • The deal holds an annual cap hit of $5.5 million, which is above the $4.85 million that Parayko reportedly had been seeking in a short-term deal in arbitration.

      "We are pleased to have Colton as part of our group for the next five seasons," Blues general manager Doug Armstrong said. "He has made tremendous progress over the last two years and possesses all the tools to be a very good NHL defenseman."

      Parayko collected a career-high 35 points (4 goals, 31 assists) in 81 games last season. The 24-year-old Alberta native also scored two goals and set up three others in 11 playoff contests.

      --Philadelphia Flyers rookie center Nolan Patrick will be held off the ice due to an infection in his face.

      Patrick, who was the second overall pick of last month's draft, had been unable to participate in on-ice activities at the team's development camp earlier this month while recovering from a second abdominal surgery.

      The 18-year-old signed a three-year, entry-level contract with the team on Monday.

      Patrick recorded 46 points (20 goals, 26 assists) in 33 games with Brandon of the Western Hockey League last season but missed 39 games, including the playoffs, because of a sports hernia.

      --The Calgary Flames signed forward Garnet Hathaway to a one year, two-way contract.

      Hathaway split the season between the Calgary Flames and their AHL affiliate Stockton Heat.

      While with the Flames, Hathaway played 26 games, picking up a goal and four assists along with 44 penalty minutes. With Stockton, he scored eight goals and added 12 assists and 67 penalty minutes in 31 regular season games before adding a pair of goals and assists in five playoff games.

  • Flames re-sign F Hathaway
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, July 20, 2017

    The Calgary Flames signed forward Garnet Hathaway to a one year, two-way contract on Thursday.

    • Hathaway, a native of Kennebunkport, Maine, split the season between the Calgary Flames and their AHL affiliate Stockton Heat.

      While with the Flames, Hathaway played 26 games, picking up a goal and four assists along with 44 penalty minutes. With Stockton, he scored eight goals and added 12 assists and 67 penalty minutes in 31 regular season games before adding a pair of goals and assists in five playoff games.

  • Flyers rookie C Patrick sidelined by facial infection
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, July 20, 2017

    Philadelphia Flyers rookie center Nolan Patrick will be held off the ice due to an infection in his face, the team announced Thursday.

    • Patrick, who was the second overall pick of last month's draft, had been unable to participate in on-ice activities at the team's development camp earlier this month while recovering from a second abdominal surgery.

      The 18-year-old signed a three-year, entry-level contract with the team on Monday. The deal is worth a reported $2.775 million with an annual salary-cap hit of $925,000.

      Patrick recorded 46 points (20 goals, 26 assists) in 33 games with Brandon of the Western Hockey League last season but missed 39 games, including the playoffs, because of a sports hernia.

      In 2015-16, the 6-foot-2, 198-pound Patrick finished fifth among all WHL players with 102 points (41 goals, 61 assists) in 72 games.

      Patrick underwent abdominal surgery on June 13 to repair issues related to the sports hernia.

      His father, Steve Patrick, was the Buffalo Sabres' first-round pick (No. 20 overall) in the 1980 draft. His uncle, James Patrick, was selected ninth overall by the New York Rangers in 1981.

  • Blues D Parayko agrees to 5-year, $27.5M contract
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, July 20, 2017

    St. Louis Blues defenseman Colton Parayko signed a five-year, $27.5 million contract, the team announced Thursday.

    • The deal holds an annual cap hit of $5.5 million, which is above the $4.85 million that Parayko reportedly had been seeking in his arbitration.

      Parayko, who was a restricted free agent, was scheduled to have a salary arbitration hearing with the Blues on Thursday.

      "We are pleased to have Colton as part of our group for the next five seasons," general manager Doug Armstrong said. "He has made tremendous progress over the last two years and possesses all the tools to be a very good NHL defenseman."

      Parayko collected a career-high 35 points (four goals, 31 assists) in 81 games last season. The 24-year-old Alberta native also scored two goals and set up three others in 11 playoff contests.

      Parayko made the NHL All-Rookie Team in 2015-16, when he recorded 33 points (nine goals, 24 assists) and a plus-28 rating in 79 games.

      The 6-foot-6, 225-pound Parayko has notched 68 points (13 goals, 55 assists), 61 penalty minutes and a plus-35 rating in 160 career contests since being selected by St. Louis in the third round of the 2012 draft.

  • Rangers sign free agent G Georgiev
    By The Sports Xchange / Wednesday, July 19, 2017

    The New York Rangers agreed to terms with free agent goaltender Alexandar Georgiev, the team announced Wednesday.

    • Georgiev, 21, appeared in 27 games with TPS Turku of Liiga in Finland during the 2016-17 season, posting a 13-8-4 record with a 1.70 goals-against average and a 923 save percentage. He appeared in one playoff game and in two games as part of the Champions Hockey League with TPS Turku last season.

      The 6-foot-1, 180-pound Georgiev participated in the Rangers' prospect development camp in June.

      The Moscow native helped Russia earn a silver medal at the 2016 IIHF World Junior Championship as he posted a 3-1 record with a 2.52 GAA in five appearances during the tournament.

  • Islanders promote Cronin to associate coach
    By The Sports Xchange / Wednesday, July 19, 2017

    The New York Islanders promoted Greg Cronin to associate coach, the team announced Wednesday.

    • Cronin, 54, was hired as an assistant coach in June 2014 and worked in the position for the past three seasons with the Islanders.

      "Greg's hockey knowledge and experiences of over 30 years in the coaching profession are an asset to our coaching staff," new head coach Doug Weight said in a statement. "He's run our penalty-kill the past several seasons and each year, it's been one of the best in the league. He has a tireless work ethic on the bench during games, at practice and in meetings. His desire to get the best out of every player, to help achieve our goal of winning is impressive and I'm thrilled to continue to work with him."

      Cronin is in his second stint with the Islanders, initially serving as an assistant coach with the organization from 1998-2003 and as head coach of the team's American Hockey League affiliate, the Bridgeport Sound Tigers, from 2003-2005.

      Prior to rejoining the Islanders in 2014, the Arlington, Mass., native spent three seasons behind the bench as an assistant coach with the Toronto Maple Leafs. Cronin served as head coach at Northeastern University from 2005-2011.

  • NHL notebook: Predators ink Aberg to 2-year pact
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, July 18, 2017

    The Nashville Predators signed forward Pontus Aberg to a two-year contract, the team announced Tuesday.

    • The deal is worth $1.3 million for Aberg, who will make $650,000 in each of the next two seasons.

      The 23-year-old Aberg appeared in 15 regular-season games in 2016-17 for Nashville, registering one goal and one assist. He added two goals and three assists in the postseason as the Predators advanced to the Stanley Cup Final.

      A native of Stockholm, Sweden, Aberg was a second-round pick of Nashville in the 2012 draft. He had 31 goals last season with Milwaukee of the American Hockey League.

      --The San Jose Sharks re-signed forward Marcus Sorensen to a two-year contract.

      Sorensen, 25, recorded 17 goals and 17 assists in 43 games with the Sharks' AHL affiliate, also in San Jose. In 19 regular season games with the Sharks, Sorensen had a goal and three assists.

      Prior to playing in North America, Sorensen recorded 32 goals and 34 assists in 97 career Swedish Hockey League games with Djurgardens IF. He represented Sweden in the 2015 Euro Hockey Tour, posting three goals and a plus-4 rating in a first-place finish.

      The 5-foot-10, 175-pound forward is a native of Sodertalje, Sweden. He was originally drafted in the fourth round by the Ottawa Senators in 2010, and was signed by San Jose as a free agent in May 2016.

      --Tampa Bay Lightning forward Michael Bournival signed a one-year, two-way contract, the team announced.

      Bournival collected two goals, an assist and two penalty minutes in 19 games last season with the Lightning. The 25-year-old also recorded nine goals, 10 assists and 18 penalty minutes in 38 contests in 2016-17 with Syracuse of the American Hockey League.

      Bournival has scored 12 goals and set up 10 others in 108 career NHL games with the Montreal Canadiens and Lightning. He was originally selected by the Colorado Avalanche in the third round of the 2010 draft and was acquired by the Canadiens for defenseman Ryan O'Byrne on Nov. 11, 2010.

      --The Detroit Red Wings re-signed right wing Martin Frk to a one-year contract, the team announced.

      Frk scored 27 goals with Grand Rapids of the American Hockey League for the second straight season in 2016-17. The 23-year-old Czech also had 23 assists in 65 games and led the team in power-play goals (12) and shots on goal (232).

      Frk failed to record a point in two games last season with the Carolina Hurricanes before being reclaimed off waivers by Detroit on Nov. 1.

      Frk, who was a second-round pick by Detroit in the 2012 NHL draft, represented the Czech Republic at the 2011 and 2013 IIHF World Junior Championships.

      --The Colorado Avalanche signed forwards Gabriel Bourque and Felix Girard and defenseman Duncan Siemens to one-year contracts for the 2017-18 campaign.

      Bourque, 26, joined the Avalanche on a professional tryout contract last season before signing a one-year deal on Oct. 10. He played in six contests for Colorado and 61 for its AHL affiliate in San Antonio, scoring 10 goals and 23 assists.

      Girard, 23, scored 10 goals and 18 assists in 73 games in the AHL last season, all career highs.

      Siemens, 23, spent most of last season in the AHL, scoring two goals and five assists in 73 games.

  • Avalanche sign Bourque, two others
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, July 18, 2017

    The Colorado Avalanche signed forwards Gabriel Bourque and Felix Girard and defenseman Duncan Siemens to one-year contracts for the 2017-18 campaign on Tuesday.

    • Bourque, 26, joined the Avalanche on a professional tryout contract last season before signing a one-year deal on Oct. 10. He played in six contests for Colorado and 61 for its AHL affiliate in San Antonio, scoring 10 goals and 23 assists.

      Girard, 23, scored 10 goals and 18 assists in 73 games in the AHL last season, all career highs.

      Siemens, 23, spent most of last season in the AHL, scoring two goals and five assists in 73 games.

  • Sharks sign F Sorensen to 2-year deal
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, July 18, 2017

    The San Jose Sharks re-signed forward Marcus Sorensen to a two-year contract on Tuesday.

    • "In Marcus' first year in North America, he quickly showed that he is a skilled player with the ability to contribute to the team's success," said Sharks assistant general manager Joe Will. "The time he spent with the Sharks this season, and the positive impact he had, proved that he can be an effective player at the highest level. We're excited to see him compete for a spot with the Sharks at training camp in the fall."

      Sorensen, 25, recorded 17 goals and 17 assists in 43 games with the Sharks' AHL affiliate, also in San Jose. In 19 regular season games with the Sharks, Sorensen had a goal and three assists.

      Prior to playing in North America, Sorensen recorded 32 goals and 34 assists in 97 career Swedish Hockey League games with Djurgardens IF. He represented Sweden in the 2015 Euro Hockey Tour, posting three goals and a plus-4 rating in a first-place finish.

      The 5-foot-10, 175-pound forward is a native of Sodertalje, Sweden. He was originally drafted in the fourth round by the Ottawa Senators in 2010, and was signed by San Jose as a free agent in May 2016.

  • Predators sign F Aberg to two-year deal
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, July 18, 2017

    The Nashville Predators signed forward Pontus Aberg to a two-year contract, the team announced Tuesday.

    • The deal is worth $1.3 million for Aberg, who will make $650,000 in each of the next two seasons.

      The 23-year-old Aberg appeared in 15 regular-season games in 2016-17 for Nashville, registering one goal and one assist. He added two goals and three assists in the postseason as the Predators advanced to the Stanley Cup Final.

      A native of Stockholm, Sweden, Aberg was a second-round pick of Nashville in the 2012 draft. He had 31 goals last season with Milwaukee of the American Hockey League.

  • Red Wings ink RW Frk to one-year deal
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, July 18, 2017

    The Detroit Red Wings re-signed right wing Martin Frk to a one-year contract, the team announced Tuesday.

    • Frk scored 27 goals with Grand Rapids of the American Hockey League for the second straight season in 2016-17. The 23-year-old Czech also had 23 assists in 65 games and led the team in power-play goals (12) and shots on goal (232).

      Frk failed to record a point in two games last season with the Carolina Hurricanes before being reclaimed off waivers by Detroit on Nov. 1.

      Frk, who was a second-round pick by Detroit in the 2012 NHL draft, represented the Czech Republic at the 2011 and 2013 IIHF World Junior Championships.

  • Lightning F Bournival inks one-year, two-way pact
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, July 18, 2017

    Tampa Bay Lightning forward Michael Bournival signed a one-year, two-way contract, the team announced on Tuesday.

    • Bournival collected two goals, an assist and two penalty minutes in 19 games last season with the Lightning. The 25-year-old also recorded nine goals, 10 assists and 18 penalty minutes in 38 contests in 2016-17 with Syracuse of the American Hockey League.

      Bournival has scored 12 goals and set up 10 others in 108 career NHL games with the Montreal Canadiens and Lightning. He was originally selected by the Colorado Avalanche in the third round of the 2010 draft and was acquired by the Canadiens for defenseman Ryan O'Byrne on Nov. 11, 2010.

  • NHL notebook: Senators' Pageau agrees to 3-year deal
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, July 17, 2017

    Ottawa Senators center Jean-Gabriel Pageau avoided arbitration by agreeing to a three-year, $9.3 million contract, the team announced Monday.

    • Pageau will make $2.6 million in the first year, $3.3 million in the second and $3.4 in the third. His arbitration hearing had been set for July 28.

      "I wasn't totally sure how the talks were going, but I knew that they were going well," Pageau told the team's website. "We've always had a good relationship with (general manager) Pierre Dorion, Bryan Murray before and with the organization. I wanted to stay with this team and I take a lot of pride to play for the Ottawa Senators, so I think that helped to get this deal done. I'm very happy."

      Pageau collected 12 goals and 21 assists while playing in all 82 games last season. The 24-year-old's best performance came in Game 2 of the second-round series against the New York Rangers, capping a four-goal outburst by scoring in overtime of a 6-5 victory.

      --The Philadelphia Flyers signed center Nolan Patrick, the No. 2 overall pick in last month's NHL draft, to a three-year, entry-level contract.

      The deal is worth a reported $2.775 million with an annual salary-cap hit of $925,000.

      The 18-year-old Patrick had 46 points (20 goals, 26 assists) in 33 games with Brandon of the Western Hockey League last season but missed 39 games, including the WHL playoffs, because of a sports hernia.

      In 2015-16, the 6-foot-2, 198-pound Patrick finished fifth among all WHL players with 102 points (41 goals, 61 assists) in 72 games.

      --Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Brian Campbell announced his retirement after 17 seasons in the NHL.

      Campbell will join the Blackhawks' front office in the business operations department, assisting with various marketing, community relations and youth hockey initiatives, the team announced.

      "We are excited that Brian will continue to be a part of the organization," Blackhawks president and CEO John McDonough said in a statement. "After a brilliant career on the ice, Brian will remain an important part of our franchise."

      Campbell, 38, finished his NHL career with 504 career points (87 goals, 417 assists) in 1,082 games. He played in 295 games in four seasons with the Blackhawks (2008-2011 and 2016-17), logging 24 goals and 110 assists.

      --Nashville Predators forward Frederick Gaudreau signed a three-year contract, the team announced.

      The contract is a two-way deal in 2017-18 and 2018-19, worth $650,000 at the NHL level and $70,000 at the American Hockey League level. The contract then becomes a one-way deal in 2019-20 worth $700,000.

      Gaudreau notched one assist in nine regular-season games last season before making his presence felt in the postseason. The 24-year-old Quebec native collected three goals in the first four games of the Stanley Cup Final against the Pittsburgh Penguins.

      Gaudreau had 25 goals and 23 assists in 66 games last season with Norfolk of the AHL.

      --New Buffalo Sabres coach Phil Housley hired Chris Hajt to serve as one of his assistants, the team announced.

      Hajt, 39, spent the last three seasons as an assistant coach for the Los Angeles Kings' American Hockey League affiliate. When the Kings' AHL affiliate was the Manchester Monarchs, he helped guide them to a Calder Cup championship after the 2014-15 season. The team also made the playoffs in each of the last two seasons as the Ontario Reign, including a division title in 2015-16.

      The Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, native is the son of former NHL defenseman Bill Hajt, who was Housley's teammate in Buffalo in the 1980s. Housley was named the 18th head coach in Sabres history on June 15.

      "It's been a process with that because we're trying to do a thorough search for really good candidates and there's a lot of really good coaches out there," Housley told The Buffalo News last week of his coaching search. "But you wanna just make sure you do the right thing and look at everybody. We still have the coach that we're looking at and trying to fill that position."

  • Predators sign F Gaudreau to 3-year deal
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, July 17, 2017

    Nashville Predators forward Frederick Gaudreau signed a three-year contract, the team announced on Monday.

    • The contract is a two-way deal in 2017-18 and 2018-19, worth $650,000 at the NHL level and $70,000 at the American Hockey League level. The contract then becomes a one-way deal in 2019-20 worth $700,000.

      Gaudreau notched one assist in nine regular-season contests last season before making his presence felt in the postseason. The 24-year-old Quebec native collected three goals in the first four games of the Stanley Cup Final against the Pittsburgh Penguins.

      Gaudreau recorded 25 goals and 23 assists in 66 games last season with Norfolk of the AHL.

  • Senators, C Pageau agree to 3-year pact
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, July 17, 2017

    Ottawa Senators center Jean-Gabriel Pageau avoided arbitration by agreeing to a three-year, $9.3 million contract, the team announced on Monday.

    • Pageau will make $2.6 million in the first year, $3.3 million in the second and $3.4 in the third. His arbitration hearing had been set for July 28.

      "I wasn't totally sure how the talks were going but I knew that they were going well," Pageau told the team's website. "We've always had a good relationship with (general manager) Pierre Dorion, Bryan Murray before and with the organization. I wanted to stay with this team and I take a lot of pride to play for the Ottawa Senators, so I think that helped to get this deal done. I'm very happy."

      Pageau collected 12 goals and 21 assists while playing in all 82 games last season. The 24-year-old's best performance came in Game 2 of the second-round series versus the New York Rangers, capping a four-goal outburst by scoring in overtime of a 6-5 victory.

      "As an organization we're thrilled to get this contract done," Dorion said. "Arbitration is definitely a path that we did not want to go down with Jean-Gabriel, especially with the way he's performed over the course of the past two seasons.

      "He showed that he's definitely deserving of this contract and any player that has a history of raising his game, whether it was in junior playoffs or (the American Hockey League) playoffs or NHL playoffs, I think you have to give credit for what he's accomplished. We're really happy to have him on board for the next three years."

      Pageau's new contract is a significant upgrade from the two-year, $1.8 million that he signed in 2015.

      Pageau has recorded 45 goals and 56 assists in 251 career contests since being selected by Ottawa in the fourth round of the 2011 draft.

  • Sabres tab Hajt as assistant
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, July 17, 2017

    New Buffalo Sabres head coach Phil Housley hired Chris Hajt to serve as one of his assistants, the team announced Monday.

    • Hajt, 39, spent the last three seasons as an assistant coach for the Los Angeles Kings' American Hockey League affiliate. When the Kings' AHL affiliate was the Manchester Monarchs, he helped guide them to a Calder Cup championship after the 2014-15 season. The team also made the playoffs in each of the last two seasons as the Ontario Reign, including a division title in 2015-16.

      The Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, native is the son of former NHL defenseman Bill Hajt, who was Housley's teammate in Buffalo in the 1980s. Housley was named the 18th head coach in Sabres history on June 15.

      "It's been a process with that because we're trying to do a thorough search for really good candidates and there's a lot of really good coaches out there," Housley told the Buffalo News last week of his coaching search. "But you wanna just make sure you do the right thing and look at everybody. We still have the coach that we're looking at and trying to fill that position."

      Chris Hajt also served as an assistant coach for the Guelph Storm of the Ontario Hockey League from 2008 to 2014.

      A former defenseman, Hajt played six NHL games for the Edmonton Oilers and Washington Capitals, adding 91 points (20 goals, 71 assists) in 477 career AHL contests.

      The Sabres also announced that assistant coach Tom Ward will return for the 2017-18 season. Ward spent the past two seasons as an assistant under Dan Bylsma, who was fired in April after the Sabres missed the playoffs for the sixth straight season.

      On July 5, the Sabres hired another assistant coach from the Kings organization, Davis Payne, as their associate coach. He spent parts of three seasons as head coach of the St. Louis Blues from 2010 to 2011 and has been an assistant with the Kings for the past five seasons.

  • Flyers sign No. 2 overall pick Patrick
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, July 17, 2017

    The Philadelphia Flyers signed center Nolan Patrick, the No. 2 overall pick in last month's NHL draft, to a three-year, entry-level contract on Monday.

    • The deal is worth a reported $2.775 million with an annual salary-cap hit of $925,000.

      The 18-year-old Patrick recorded 46 points (20 goals, 26 assists) in 33 games with Brandon of the Western Hockey League last season but missed 39 games, including the WHL playoffs, because of a sports hernia.

      In 2015-16, the 6-foot-2, 198-pound Patrick finished fifth among all WHL players with 102 points (41 goals, 61 assists) in 72 games

      Patrick underwent abdominal surgery on June 13 to repair issues related to the sports hernia. He took part in off-ice activities during the Flyers' development camp earlier this month. He is expected to begin skating in the next week and be ready for training camp in September.

      His father, Steve Patrick, was the Buffalo Sabres' first-round pick (No. 20 overall) in the 1980 draft. His uncle, James Patrick, was selected nine overall by the New York Rangers in 1981.

  • Blackhawks D Campbell retires after 17 NHL seasons
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, July 17, 2017

    Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Brian Campbell announced his retirement on Monday after 17 seasons in the NHL.

    • Campbell will join the Blackhawks' front office in the business operations department, assisting with various marketing, community relations and youth hockey initiatives, the team announced.

      "We are excited that Brian will continue to be a part of the organization," Blackhawks president and CEO John McDonough said in a statement. "After a brilliant career on the ice, Brian will remain an important part of our franchise."

      Campbell, 38, finished his NHL career with 504 career points (87 goals, 417 assists) in 1,082 games. He played in 295 games over four seasons with the Blackhawks (2008-2011 and 2016-17), tallying 24 goals and 110 assists.

      Campbell was a member of the Blackhawks' 2010 Stanley Cup Champion team and collected the primary assist on Patrick Kane's series-clinching goal.

      On Jan. 22, Campbell recorded his 500th career point and on April 5 he appeared in his 1,000th career NHL game. The defenseman appeared in four NHL All-Star Games (2007, 2008, 2009, 2012).

      "I'm excited to transition into the next step in both my professional career and life," Campbell said. "I'm grateful to the countless number of teammates, coaches, team staff and fans that I have crossed paths with throughout my playing career in Chicago, Buffalo, Florida and San Jose. The Blackhawks organization has allowed me to take on this challenge and I'm thankful for this new opportunity."

      The native of Strathroy, Ontario, played in the Stanley Cup playoffs in nine seasons, appearing in a total of 107 games, scoring nine goals and adding 35 assists. Campbell had a streak of 423 consecutive games played that began in March 23, 2011, and ended on Dec. 29, 2016.

      Originally selected in the sixth round of the 1997 NHL draft by Buffalo, Campbell began his NHL career with the Sabres where he played eight seasons (1999-2004, 2005-2008) and scored 176 points (32 goals, 144 assists) in 391 games. Campbell played five seasons with the Florida Panthers (2011-2016) where he totaled 175 points (28 goals, 147 assists) in 376 games and won the 2012 Lady Bing Trophy (Most Sportsmanlike). He also played 20 games during the 2007-08 season with the San Jose Sharks.

  • Oilers sign D Simpson to one-year deal
    By The Sports Xchange / Sunday, July 16, 2017

    The Edmonton Oilers signed defenseman Dillon Simpson to a one-year contract on Sunday.

    • Simpson, 24, recorded 11 points (three goals, eight assists) and 26 penalty minutes in 53 games with the Bakersfield Condors of the American Hockey League last season.

      The 6-foot-1, 198-pound Simpson also played in three games with the Oilers in 2016-17, appearing in his first career NHL game on Dec. 8 against the Philadelphia Flyers. He averaged 10:53 of time on ice.

      Simpson owns 48 points (10 goals, 38 assists) and 60 penalty minutes in 181 career AHL games over three seasons.

      The Edmonton, Alberta, native was selected by Edmonton in the fourth round of the 2011 NHL Draft.

  • Knights sign D Reinhart, F Leipsic
    By The Sports Xchange / Saturday, July 15, 2017

    The Vegas Golden Knights signed defenseman Griffin Reinhart and forward Brendan Leipsic to two-year contracts, the team announced Saturday.

    • Reinhart's deal is worth $1.6 million while Leipsic's pact is for $1.3 million.

      Both restricted free agents were selected by the Golden Knights in last month's expansion draft.

      Reinhart collected seven goals, 14 assists and a plus-8 rating in 54 games last season with Bakersfield of the American Hockey League. The 23-year-old, who was the fourth overall pick of the New York Islanders in the 2012 draft, also notched an assist in one playoff game last season with the Edmonton Oilers.

      Leipsic recorded 18 goals and 33 assists in 49 games last season with the Toronto Marlies of the AHL. The 23-year-old scored one goal and set up two others in six games last season with the Maple Leafs.

  • Devils sign top overall pick Hischier to entry-level deal
    By The Sports Xchange / Saturday, July 15, 2017

    The New Jersey Devils signed center Nico Hischier, the No. 1 overall pick in the 2017 NHL draft, to a maximum three-year, entry-level contract worth $925,000 per season, the team announced Saturday.

    • The 18-year-old Hischier took part in a scrimmage in front of Devils' season-ticket holders on the final day of development camp at the Barnabas Health Hockey House in Newark, N.J.

      "He's been everything I had hoped he would be," Devils general manager Ray Shero told reporters Saturday of the left-shooting forward. "I know this isn't an evaluation but certainly his on-ice skill set is really fun to watch.

      "He's a really respectful kid and the way he carries himself I think is really nice to see and he has interacted well with the younger players and the veterans that came in. That's his upbringing, but it's been a great learning week for him and it's been nice to see the type of person he is as well."

      Hischier was selected by New Jersey at last month's draft in Chicago, the first time the Devils had the No. 1 pick in team history. He is the only Swiss-born player to be selected with the top pick in NHL history.

      In 2016-17 with Halifax of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, Hischier led all rookies with 86 points (38 goals, 48 assists) in 57 regular-season games and added three goals and four assists in six playoff contests. He was named CHL and QMJHL Rookie of the Year, QMJHL Offensive Rookie of the Year, a member of the QMJHL All-Rookie Team, and was awarded with the Mike Bossy Trophy as the QMJHL's Best Professional Prospect.

      During the second day of draft, Hischier was named the 2017 recipient of the E.J. McGuire Award of Excellence, which is given to the candidate who best exemplifies the commitment to excellence through strength and character, competitiveness and athleticism.

      The Brig, Switzerland, native led his home country with seven points at the 2017 IIHF World Junior Championships.

  • Golden Knights lose F Gusev to KHL
    By The Sports Xchange / Friday, July 14, 2017

    Vegas Golden Knights forward Nikita Gusev signed a two-year contract with SKA St. Petersburg, the Kontinental Hockey League announced on Friday.

    • Gusev was acquired by Vegas during last month's expansion draft. The Golden Knights also picked up defenseman Jason Garrison, a 2017 second-round pick and a 2018 fourth-round pick from the Tampa Bay Lightning in that deal.

      The 24-year-old Gusev was a seventh-round pick of the Lightning in 2012, but has spent his entire career playing in the KHL.

      Gusev collected 24 goals and 47 assists in 57 games with SKA St. Petersburg last season. He played on line with Golden Knights center Vadim Shipachyov.

  • Penguins' Kessel responds to trade rumors
    By The Sports Xchange / Friday, July 14, 2017

    Phil Kessel has enjoyed his time with the Pittsburgh Penguins, but that doesn't mean he hasn't heard his name being included in trade rumors.

    • "You know what, it happens all the time, right?" the Penguins winger told TSN on Friday. "I've been traded before, and if I get traded again, it is what it is. It's a business, and if I'm somewhere else, I'll play hard for them.

      "Hockey's a strange game. You never know why you get traded or what they're thinking. It could be from years down the road or whatever. Like I said, it's a business, and if you look at it like that, it's all right."

      Kessel's name was linked in potential trade talks this week after former assistant coach Rick Tocchet accepted the Arizona Coyotes' heading coaching position on Tuesday. The Penguins are paying $6.8 million of his $8 million cap hit for the next five seasons. The Toronto Maple Leafs pick up the other $1.2 million per year of the 29-year-old's salary as part of the trade that sent him to Pittsburgh.

      Penguins general manager Jim Rutherford told a Pittsburgh radio station on Thursday that he doesn't expect to trade Kessel, who has a limited no-trade clause and has helped the team win back-to-back Stanley Cup titles.

      "Phil Kessel's an important part of the Penguins," Rutherford told 93.7 FM The Fan. "He gets a lot of points. He scores big goals. He sets up big goals. The more impact players that you have, like we have, the better chance you have of winning.

      "He's an important part. I don't want to sit here and say that a certain player's not going to get traded at some point in his career. I mean, Phil already did. But that's not something that I foresee happening right now."

      Kessel has been traded on two occasions in his career, with Boston sending its former first-round pick to Toronto in 2009 and the Maple Leafs shuffling him to the Penguins six years later.

      Kessel collected 23 goals and 47 assists in 82 games last season before adding 23 points (eight goals, 15 assists) in 25 games during the playoffs. He has recorded 649 points (296 goals, 353 assists) in 832 career contests with the Bruins, Maple Leafs and Penguins.

  • Umberger to attempt comeback with Stars
    By The Sports Xchange / Friday, July 14, 2017

    Forward R.J. Umberger will attend training camp on a tryout basis in September with the Dallas Stars, the team announced Friday.

    • By joining the Stars, Umberger will be reunited with former Columbus Blue Jackets coach Ken Hitchcock.

      Umberger last played in the league in 2015-16 with the Philadelphia Flyers, collecting two goals and nine assists in 39 games. The 35-year-old was bought out by the club after the injury-plagued season.

      Umberger has scored 180 goals, set up 212 others and has 312 penalty minutes in 779 career games with the Blue Jackets and Flyers.

  • NHL notebook: Lightning ink Palat to 5-year deal
    By The Sports Xchange / Friday, July 14, 2017

    The Tampa Bay Lightning secured the last of "The Triplets" by re-signing forward Ondrej Palat to a five-year, $26.5 million contract on Friday.

    • Palat's deal is on par annually with that of fellow Triplets Tyler Johnson and Nikita Kucherov. Johnson recently signed a seven-year pact with $35 million while Kucherov's contract goes for an average $4.77 million -- although that pact ends after the 2018-19 season.

      Palat collected 17 goals, 35 assists and 39 penalty minutes in 75 games last season with the Lightning. The 26-year-old Czech ranked second among the team's forwards in ice time (19:07) while his five power-play goals were fourth as he finished the final season of a three-year, $10 million contract.

      --The Calgary Flames signed restricted free-agent forward Curtis Lazar to a two-year, $1.9 million contract.

      Lazar collected one goal, three assists and four penalty minutes over 37 games split between the Ottawa Senators and Flames last season.

      The 22-year-old British Columbia native was acquired from the Senators with defenseman Michael Kostka at the trade deadline for blue-liner Jyrki Jokipakka and a 2017 second-round draft pick.

      Lazar has recorded 13 goals, 26 assists and 36 penalty minutes in 180 career games with the Senators and Flames since being selected 17th overall by Ottawa in the 2013 draft.

      --Los Angeles Kings forward Jonny Brodzinski signed a two-year contract extension.

      Forward Michael Mersch, and defensemen Kevin Gravel and Paul LaDue also inked one-year, two-way deals.

      For Brodzinski, the first year is a two-way deal while the second is strictly one way. The contract carries an average annual value of $650,000 at the NHL level.

      Mersch and Gravel's pacts involve an average annual value of $650,000 at the NHL level, while LaDue's deal is worth $874,125 at the NHL level.

      --The Chicago Blackhawks agreed to terms with defenseman Erik Gustafsson on a one-year contract that runs through the 2017-18 season.

      Gustafsson, 25, registered a team-high 25 assists to go with five goals in 68 games with the American Hockey League's Rockford IceHogs last season. The Nynashamn, Sweden, native posted eight goals and 33 assists in 95 regular-season games with the IceHogs over the past two seasons.

      Originally signed by Chicago as a free agent on April 30, 2015, Gustafsson made his NHL debut during the 2015-16 season, notching 14 assists in 41 regular-season games with the Blackhawks. He also added an assist in five playoff contests.

      Gustafsson was originally drafted by the Edmonton Oilers in the fourth round of the 2012 draft.

      --The New York Islanders signed goaltender Christopher Gibson to a one-year, two-way deal.

      Gibson, 24, made his NHL debut with the Islanders in 2015-16, appearing in four games during his first year with the organization. Last season, Gibson posted a 6-0-0 record with a 2.52 goals-against-average and .912 save percentage in seven games with Bridgeport of the American Hockey League.

      Gibson has played 106 AHL games with the Sound Tigers and Toronto Marlies, going 54-34-9 with a 2.54 GAA, .915 save percentage and four shutouts. The Islanders initially acquired him on Sept. 17, 2015 in exchange for Michael Grabner from the Toronto Maple Leafs.

      Gibson was drafted by the Los Angeles Kings in the second round in 2011.

      --The Carolina Hurricanes agreed to terms with 2017 first-round selection Martin Necas on a three-year, entry-level contract.

      The deal will pay Necas $832,500 on the NHL level or $70,000 on the AHL level per season. He receives a signing bonus of $277,500.

      Necas, 18, spent last season with HC Kometa Brno of the Czech Extraliga, the Czech Republic's top professional league. He notched seven goals and eight assists in 41 regular-season games. He scored four goals in 10 playoff games as Brno won the league championship.

      The 6-foot-1, 178-pounder also represented the Czech Republic at the 2017 International Ice Hockey Federation World Junior Championship, notching a goal and two assists in five games.

      --The Washington Capitals re-signed left winger Liam O'Brien to a one-year, two-way contract.

      The deal is worth $650,000 at the NHL level and $85,000 at the AHL level.

      O'Brien, 22, appeared in one game with the Capitals during the 2016-17 season and has a goal and an assist in 14 career NHL games with Washington.

      The 6-foot-1, 215-pound left winger had 10 goals and 20 assists in 64 games with the AHL's Hershey Bears last season. In 168 career AHL games, O'Brien has 21 goals and 33 assists.

      --The New York Rangers agreed to terms with forward Filip Chytil on a three-year, entry-level contract.

      Chytil, 17, skated in 38 games with PSG Zlin in the Czech Extraliga this past season, registering four goals and four assists for eight points, along with 16 penalty minutes. He was one of 21 players younger than 18 who played in the league last season.

      The 6-foot-2, 192-pounder has played in Zlin's organization since the 2012-13 season. Chytil skated in 30 games with PSG Zlin's U18 team during the 2015-16 season, registering 28 goals and 22 assists along with a plus-23 rating and eight penalty minutes.

      Chytil was selected by the Rangers in the first round of the 2017 draft.

      --The San Jose Sharks signed goaltender Josef Korenar to a standard, entry-level contract. Per club policy, the terms of the deal were not disclosed.

      Korenar, 19, appeared in 32 games with Lincoln of the USHL last season, posting a 14-11-4 record along with a 2.22 goals-against average and a .925 save percentage with two shutouts.

      NHL Central Scouting ranked him 17th amongst all draft-eligible North American goaltenders in their end of season rankings.

      The 6-foot-1, 175-pound native of Humpolec, Czech Republic, was also ranked as the fourth-best European goaltending prospect by NHL Central Scouting ahead of the 2016 draft.