With Edmonton Oilers goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov ready to return, it looked like Jason LaBarbera would be sent back to the AHL Oklahoma City Barons. He will head to the minors, but the destination has changed.
The Blackhawks acquired the 33-year-old goaltender in exchange for future considerations. He has a 3.28 GAA and .870 save percentage in seven games with Edmonton this season.
Chicago needed to add some netminding depth with Corey Crawford and Nikolai Khabibulin both sidelined due to lower-body injuries. The Blackhawks have confirmed that LaBarbera will play for the AHL Rockford IceHogs, so Antti Raanta and Kent Simpson will stay with Chicago for now.
For Edmonton, this move will presumably save them some money given that LaBarbera has a one-way contract worth $1 million.
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.