The AHL may have delayed the start of their season for several months, but that won’t stop teams from continuing to fill out their rosters, especially with the ECHL still hoping to begin in December. Meanwhile, hockey is in full swing in Europe and clubs continue to make moves, whether that be loan agreements with NHL teams, free agent signings, or trades. Keep up with all of these minor transactions from today:
- The AHL’s Chicago Wolves, now an affiliate of the Hurricanes, have added a pair of veteran minor leaguers to their roster, both of whom played for Carolina’s previous affiliate, the Charlotte Checkers last season. The team has announced that defenseman Cavan Fitzgerald and forward Colin Markison have each signed a one-year contract. Fitzgerald, 24, was a member of the San Jose Sharks prior to joining Charlotte last season, but played exclusively in the AHL on his entry-level contract. A productive two-way defenseman, Fitzgerald is a quality addition to the Chicago blue line. Markison, 28, has four NCAA seasons with the University of Vermont and five AHL seasons with Bridgeport, Texas, and Charlotte on his resume. An undersized scorer, Markinson’s production has fluctuated over the years and may depend on his role and the system in Chicago.
- The Boston Bruins had already loaned Joona Koppanen overseas to KOOVEE of the Finnish minor league Metsis, but he is now on the move to the top level. Liiga club Ilves has announced that Koppanen has now joined them on loan, a reunion with a player who grew up in the system and played for the main club in 2017-18. Koppanen, 22, is a big power forward who recorded 18 points in 43 games with the AHL’s Providence Bruins last season and already had a whopping 17 points in ten games with KOOVEE this year. Koppanen appears to be a prospect on the rise, but is buried behind a team NHL and AHL roster for the Bruins. Ilves’ stated that Koppanen’s loan is until “further notice”, which could mean the 6’5″ center might stay in Finland beyond NHL training camp.
- While the deal has yet to be finalized, former NHLer Viktor Tikhonov is on the move in the KHL. The two sides are still working out the details, but Tikhonov has been traded from Ak Bars Kazan to Spartak Moscow, according to Sport.ru. Spartak had previously pursued Tikhonov as a free agent this summer, but he opted to re-sign with Ak Bars. Tikhonov was traded to Kazan last season from SKA St. Petersburgh, where he had played for seven of the past eight seasons. The one break was in 2015-16, which he split between the Arizona Coyotes and Chicago Blackhawks. Tikhonov is no longer an elite scorer in the KHL, but his experience and two-way acumen still make him a valuable asset.