AHL legend Helmer calls it a career


One of the longest active careers in professional hockey is coming to an end.

Bryan Helmer, the American Hockey League’s all-time leader Calder Cup playoff games played, has announced his retirement at age 41.

Some will recognize the veteran defenseman from his 146 NHL games with Phoenix, St. Louis, Vancouver and Washington, but he’ll largely be remembered as one of the American League’s most outstanding players over the last two decades.

Helmer played 19 seasons in the AHL from 1993-2013. He ranks third all-time in games played (1,117, the most by a defenseman) and is the AHL’s all-time leader in points (564) and assists (435) by a blueliner.

Undrafted out of the OJHL, Helmer began his AHL run with Albany in 1993, winning a Calder Cup with the River Rats two years later.

In 2009 and 2010, he again captured the Calder as captain of the Hershey Bears.

Though he’s retired from pro hockey, Helmer isn’t walking away from the game entirely. This fall, he’ll join OHL Peterborough as one of head coach Jody Hull’s assistants.

Kassian sent to hospital after being involved in car accident

Scott Darling, Zack Kassian

Montreal Canadiens winger Zack Kassian was involved in a car accident early Sunday morning.

According to the Montreal Gazette, Kassian was a passenger in the vehicle that crashed into a tree.

The SUV was being driven by a 20-year-old female at the time of the accident.

Montreal police confirmed that speed didn’t play a factor in the collision, but alcohol may have.

The Canadiens have since confirmed the incident took place and have also mentioned that Kassian was taken to hospital.

A club official described his injuries as being “minor”.

“(Kassian) was all bloodied up and stuff. He was in a daze,” said Steve Petrenko, a resident of the street on which the accident took place. “He had a hard time walking, and he almost took a fall.”

This story will be updated when more information is made available.

Habs and Fleischmann agree on one-year deal

Tomas Fleischmann,
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The Montreal Canadiens announced that they have signed Tomas Fleischmann to a one-year contract.

According to TVA Sports, the deal is worth $750,000.

The 31-year-old was invited to camp on a professional tryout, but his preseason performance showed that he could still contribute at the NHL level.

Fleischmann found instant chemistry with new linemates David Desharnais and Dale Weise, and it looks like the trio will open the regular season as Montreal’s third line.

The veteran winger started  last season with Florida, but was traded to Anaheim on Feb. 28. He had a hard time cracking the Duck’s lineup and was a healthy scratch in most of their playoff games last spring.

Fleischmann scored eight goals and 27 points in 66 games last season.