For the second time this week, a veteran NHLer has inked a deal in the American League.
Rod Pelley — who split last season between Anaheim and New Jersey — has signed a professional tryout contract with the Norfolk Admirals, Anaheim’s new AHL affiliate.
Norfolk had previously played under the Tampa Bay Lightning’s organizational umbrella, but began a new affiliation with the Ducks for 2012-13.
Pelley, 28, was traded from New Jersey to Anaheim in mid-December last season. He went on to appear in 45 games for the Ducks, registering 2G-1A-3PTS while averaging eight minutes a game.
A native of British Columbia, Pelley has been skating with various members of the Vancouver Canucks during the lockout and also participated in Bieksa’s Buddies, an exhibition game at the University of British Columbia that raised $200,000 for local charity.
As mentioned above, Pelley — who’s played over 250 NHl games — wasn’t the only veteran NHLer to sign an AHL PTO this week. Defenseman Mike Commodore agreed to terms on Thursday with the Hamilton Bulldogs, an affiliate of the Montreal Canadiens.
Derek Roy has finally found work — but it’s not in the NHL.
Roy, who spent the entire preseason in Washington’s camp on a PTO, has signed with SC Bern of Switzerland’s National League A, the club announced on Friday.
The news comes after Roy narrowly missed out on making the Caps roster, and just one year after he had something of a bounce-back campaign in Edmonton, scoring 22 points in 46 games while developing chemistry with young winger Nail Yakupov.
A 12-year NHL veteran, Roy is one of the more prominent names to be squeezed out of work this season, and head overseas. The 31-year-old has scored over 500 points in 738 career contests, and has twice represented Canada at the World Hockey Championships.
With Bern, Roy will play on one of Switzerland’s stronger teams, alongside a trio of ex-NHLers: Chuck Kobasew, Andrew Ebbett and Cory Conacher.
Robin Lehner might not be back anytime soon.
Making his debut with the Buffalo Sabres, the 24-year-old goaltender couldn’t complete Thursday’s game against his former squad, the Ottawa Senators, due to what has now been revealed to be a right leg injury.
When he left the arena, he was wearing a walking boot on that nearly went up to his knee.
“It doesn’t look like it’s short term,” Sabres coach Dan Bylsma told the Buffalo News. “It’s more than day-to-day at this point, but we need to evaluate further.”
It’s a rocky start to what’s an important campaign for Lehner. He has been given an opportunity to demonstrate that he’s ready to be a starting goaltender after being acquired by the Sabres over the summer, but it looks like that will have to be postponed.
While he’s sidelined, Chad Johnson is likely to be leaned on heavily.