Ben Eager is on his way to Russia.
Eager — a former Flyer, Blackhawk, Thrasher, Shark and Oiler — has reportedly signed a deal to play in the KHL, per Sportsnet’s Mark Spector.
The 30-year-old, taken 23rd overall at the 2002 NHL Entry Draft, has spent the last three seasons with the Oilers organization, bouncing back and forth between the parent club and its AHL affiliate in Oklahoma City. The latter stages of Eager’s time in Edmonton were marred by a concussion suffered during a fight with Vancouver’s Zack Kassian.
A big, physical player that had disciplinary issues, Eager’s time in the NHL was marred by a Toronto-area bar fight in 2012, which saw him slapped with aggravated assault charges. This came after the Oilers fined him $13,000 for smashing a penalty box video camera, and that came after he was suspended four games fora sucker punch on then-Leafs forward Colby Armstrong in 2011.
Interestingly enough, this marks the fourth Oiler to leave the team for the KHL (though to be clear, Eager was a UFA on July 1 and unlikely to be re-signed). The others include Philip Larsen, Roman Horak and Anton Belov.