According to TSN, the Lightning has signed former Pittsburgh Penguin and Brad Richards Rimouski Oceanic Michel Ouellet to a two-year deal. TSN is reporting Ouellet will make $1.2 in year one and $1.3 million in year 2. The winger had 19 goals in limited ice time for Pittsburgh last season and was rumored to be not qualified as a restricted free agent because of arbitration concerns.
In other news, defenseman Cory Sarich signed a 5-year, 18 million dollar contract (3.6 per year) with the Calgary Flames. Also, center Eric Perrin signed a 2-year, 1.5 million dollar contract with Atlanta.
Lightning press release on Ouellet:
Damian Crisdotero reports on his blog that Riku Helenius will indeed come to North America this coming season to play for Seattle of the WHL. No mention of a source, but Helenius' move across the pond seems likely now that his Finnish club Ilves has signed veteran netminder Tero Leinonen away from Lulea of the Swedish Elitserien.
(The Suburban) Beaconsfieldâ€™s Alex Killorn became the highest selected Lac St. Louis Tiger in the National Hockey Leagueâ€™s entry draft held last Friday and Saturday in Columbus, Ohio, when the Tampa Bay Lightning chose the 6-foot 161-pound center in the third round, 77th overall.
â€œWe (the family) were watching the draft on the NHL network and when I heard my name being called I couldnâ€™t believe it,â€ Killorn said. â€œI got so excited and then the phone calls started to come. At least I knew it was true and the guys werenâ€™t trying to punk me. Getting selected by Tampa Bay was a real honor. They have such a great organization, I feel really fortunate.â€
For the rest of the story, see The Suburban newspaper online.
Lightning 2006 first round draft pick Riku Helenius was selected by the WHL's Seattle Thunderbirds in the first round of the Canadian Hockey League Import Draft today. Helenius, a 6-3 goaltender who missed practically all of last season with Ilves Jr. in Finland because of a shoulder injury, was taken with the 46th overall pick.
â€œWe spoke to Tampa Bay a year ago about adding Helenius to our team but the player was not ready to come at that time,â€ Seattle General Manager Russ Farwell said in a story on the Thunderbirdsâ€™ web site.
â€œThere is a good chance this year he could come over and we felt we would take that chance because this combination would give us the best 1-2 goalie combination in our division.â€