Leafs sign veteran Smithson to AHL tryout

The Toronto Maple Leafs are kicking the tires on veteran NHLer Jerred Smithson by signing him to a tryout with the AHL Marlies, according to Sportsnet’s Nick Kypreos.

Smithson, 34, is a veteran of nearly 600 NHL contests and split last season between Florida and Edmonton. He was actually Edmonton’s trade deadline acquisition last year, coming aboard for the final 10 games of the campaign as the Oilers tried to make a playoff push.

(They failed.)

Technically, Smithson’s been a deadline pickup two years in a row — in 2011-12, Florida acquired him from Nashville for its playoff push, and he proceeded to appear in five of the Panthers’ seven postseason games that spring.

He’s a good defensive forward and something of a faceoff specialist. Toronto is relatively thin in terms of center depth, so it’s possible he could get a look in the Leafs’ bottom six at some point this year.


Glencross released from another PTO, this time by Avs

Washington Capitals v Ottawa Senators
1 Comment

Curtis Glencross’ hard-luck preseason continued on Monday, as the Avalanche announced they released him from his training camp tryout.

Glencross had previously been cut from Toronto’s camp, which he described as “kind of a shock” move. Following that release, the 32-year-old quickly shifted to Colorado but arrived fairly late in the overall process, and only got a bit of exposure before being let go.

While some thought yesterday’s trade of Freddie Hamilton to Calgary may have opened up a spot for Glencross, the Avs now appear to be going in a different direction.

A two-time 20-goal scorer that netted 13 in 71 games last year, it’s unclear what lies ahead for Glencross.

Slepyshev earns final Oilers roster spot; Draisaitl to AHL

Anton Slepyshev, Anton Lander
Leave a comment

The Edmonton Oilers have assigned center Leon Draisaitl to AHL Bakersfield.

The demotion of Draisaitl, 19, means 21-year-old rookie Anton Slepyshev has made the opening-day roster after scoring twice and adding two assists in exhibition action.

The Oilers experimented during the preseason with Draisaitl, a natural center, on the wing. He didn’t have a particularly poor camp, finishing with one goal and three assists in six games.

But Slepyshev apparently impressed more.

“He’s a young player but he’s played pro hockey before,” coach Todd McLellan told the Edmonton Journal. “You can see it.”

Slepyshev played 58 games in the KHL last season, scoring 15 goals for Salavat Yulaev Ufa.