The Erste Bank Eishockey Liga — the highest rung of professional hockey in Austria — added some more NHL star power on Monday when KC KAC Klagenfurt reportedly agreed to terms with Edmonton forward Sam Gagner.
Gagner, 23, is the second notable NHLer to join Klagenfurt recently. Over the weekend, the club secured the services of Buffalo defenseman and former Calder Trophy winner Tyler Myers.
Prior to signing Gagner and Myers, Klagenfurt had a limited amount of big-league experience on its roster. Former NHL farmhands Andy Chiodo and Tyler Spurgeon are on the roster, as is former Panthers forward Peter Ratchuk.
It’ll be interesting to see if Gagner can carry over the positive momentum from his successful 2011-12 campaign in Edmonton. The five-year veteran posted a career-high in average time on ice per game (17:11) and, in February, tied a club record set by Wayne Gretzky and Paul Coffey by scoring eight points (4G, 4A) in a win over the Chicago Blackhawks.
That kicked off a stretch where Gagner scored 15 points over five games and broke the Oilers’ record for consecutive points, with 11.