It’s been a packed day on the NHL schedule, with seven games already completed. The Montreal Canadiens took home a late comeback win against the New York Islanders, while the Tampa Bay Lightning triumphed in a 2020 Stanley Cup Final rematch that was nationally televised in the United States. As fans continue to enjoy today’s wealth of NHL action, teams in minor and foreign leagues are making tweaks to their rosters. We’ll track those moves here.
- 2011 first-round pick Joe Morrow, who was part of the infamous trade that sent Tyler Seguin to the Dallas Stars, had his contract terminated with KHL club HK Sochi today. The 162-game NHL veteran had a difficult 31-game run in Russia, potting just nine points for the worst team in the KHL, and will now look elsewhere to continue his professional career.
- 2014 sixth-overall pick Jake Virtanen was released by EHC Visp, a club that competes in the second division of Swiss Hockey. Emmanuel Favre of the Swiss newspaper Le Matin reported that Virtanen’s release comes after he allegedly had an altercation with a teammate. On paper, Virtanen’s numbers were solid this year (25 points in 21 games) but he’ll now need to find another home to continue his pro career as his time with Visp has ended.
- Former Arizona Coyotes prospect Jens Looke has reportedly transferred to IF Bjorkloven, according to Johan Svensson of SportExpressen. The move takes Looke from the Finnish Liiga to the Swedish second-division, the HockeyAllsvenskan, where he has starred in the past. The last time Looke, who has 29 points in 37 games in Liiga this season, was in the HockeyAllsvenskan he scored 62 points in 52 games, helping lift Timra to promotion to the SHL. That’s exactly what he’ll hope to do with Bjorkloven this season.
- The ECHL’s South Carolina Stingrays have released netminder Mario Culina. The team lost their top scorer, Carter Turnbull, yesterday, and now augments their situation in the crease with the release of the 25-year-old Culina. Culina made his professional debut last season with 13 games played for the Fort Wayne Komets and had played two games for the Stingrays since signing with them on February 6th.
- The exodus from SaiPa has begun. Per an announcement from his new club, SaiPa Lappeenranta’s starting netminder Niclas Westerholm has signed a contract with rival Liiga side Karpat. SaiPa currently sit last in the Liiga standings, and with their fate looking increasingly dire Westerholm has chosen to make an exit. The 25-year-old has played 40 games this season and has an .884 save percentage. He’ll compete with Ottawa Senators prospect Leevi Merilainen and Pittsburgh Penguins prospect Joel Blomqvist.
- Former Toronto Maple Leafs prospect Nicolas Mattinen has reportedly signed a contract to leave his current team, the ICEHL’s VSV EC at the end of the season to join the DEL’s Straubing Tigers for the 2023-24 campaign, according to Martin Quendler of Kleine Zeitung. Mattinen, 24, has been VSV’s top blueliner this season, scoring 37 points in 44 games in what has been a successful first season playing overseas professional hockey for the two-time OHL champion.
- Adam Lapsansky, a veteran of Slovakia’s top professional league, is transferring from HC Dukla Michalovce to HC Nove Zamsky. Through this transfer Lapsansky, who has nearly 500 Slovak Extraliga games under his belt, moves up one spot on the league table. Lapsansky has scored just eight points in 25 games this season, and will hope that this transfer serves as a productive change of scenery.
- 38-year-old Marek Hovorka, a longtime veteran of the Central European pro hockey circuit and an Olympian who represented his native Slovakia at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyongchang, has signed with Slovak club HC Kosice. Hovorka has played in Slovakia’s second division this season, scoring 14 points in 12 games for Vlci Zilina, and will now look to help Kosice as they attempt to gain ground on HKM Zvolen and HC Slovan Bratislava in the league table.
This page will be updated throughout the day