Unrestricted free agent Milan Jurcina has found work, signing a deal with HC Pirati Chomutov of the Czech Extraliga. The news was first reported by Jurcina’s agent, Allan Walsh, who said the veteran NHL defenseman would debut with Chomutov on Friday.
There’s a certain amount of intrigue surrounding the Jurcina signing given his injury-riddled last two years in the NHL. He missed 53 games over that time with hip, elbow and groin ailments — as such, the Islanders opted not to extend Jurcina’s contract after giving him a one-year, $1.6 million deal for the 2011-12 season.
Prior to the injuries, the 6-foot-4, 253-pound rearguard had proven to be a steady, defensive-minded presence. His best season came in 2008-09 with the Capitals, when he played in a career-high 79 games before adding two goals in 14 postseason contests.
That said, he seemed to discover a more offensive side to his game with the Isles, scoring a career-high 17 points in just 46 appearances in 2010-11.
With Chomutov, Jurcina will play alongside Chicago Blackhawks forward Michael Frolik, who signed with the team in September.