After spending the last three seasons exclusively in the minors, Devils defenseman Julian Melchiori has decided not to wait for another crack at the NHL free agent market. Instead, he has decided to head overseas as Neftekhimik Nizhnekamsk of the KHL announced (Twitter link) that they have signed Melchiori to a one-year contract.
The 28-year-old spent most of this season on a minor league deal with New Jersey but did well enough that the Devils converted Melchiori to an NHL contract just before the trade deadline to give them the option to recall him down the stretch. However, the pandemic put an end to those plans. Overall, he played in 61 games with Binghamton this season, picking up a career-best 17 points (6-11-17).
Melchiori has played in parts of three NHL seasons over his career with Winnipeg, the franchise that drafted him back in the third round (87th overall) back when they were in Atlanta. But with just 30 games with the Jets being all of his experience over eight professional seasons, his decision to take a guaranteed deal overseas seems like a sound one over testing the NHL market a few months from now.