Former Blue Jackets’ forward Alexandre Picard and former Hurricanes’ defenseman Brett Bellemore, have signed today to play for Red Star Kalunin, the new KHL expansion team in China, according to KHL reporter Alvis Kalnins. Picard, 30, was taken eighth overall by the Blue Jackets in the 2004 entry draft, and last played in the NHL in 2010. Bellemore, 28, has played 121 NHL games, all with the Hurricanes, the last of which came in 2015.
Here are some more links from throughout the day.
- Canucks forward Alex Burrows is hopeful for a bounce back season in 2017, writes Dhiren Mahiben of The Hockey News. Burrows had just nine goals, 22 points last year, in what has to be considered one of the worst states of his career. As a 35 year old on the last year of his contract, he may be staring at the end of his NHL career, but Burrows tells Mahiben that he has been assured by management that there remains a spot for him in the lineup.
- Also from The Hockey News, Mike Brophy went over some of his scattered off-season thoughts. Among other subjects, Brophy speculates that Connor McDavid may be soon in line for the Oilers’ captaincy, and questions how long teams will continue to take chances on Buffalo Sabres’ forward Evander Kane. There were reports of the Sabres shopping Kane earlier this summer. Kane was recently charged with harassment after allegedly attacking two women in a bar.
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy writes today on the St. Louis Blues, and how they intend to move forward with their young core after losing veteran Brian Elliott, David Backes, and Troy Brouwer. As Wyshnyski discussed, the Blues will rely more heavily this year on their under-25 core, including Robby Fabbri, Colton Parayko, Jaden Schwartz, and Vladimir Tarasenko, as well as 26-year old defenseman Alex Pietrangelo.
- Luke Fox of Sportsnet writes today about the future of former New York Rangers’ center Dominic Moore. Fox writes that the Rangers appear to have moved on, but that Moore, 35, has multiple offers on the table as he considers his future. Moore’s production has declined in recent years, but data suggests he’s been playing some of the tougher minutes in the NHL as of late.