With the trade deadline long past us, playoff races are heating up across the NHL. The Buffalo Sabres are looking to end the league’s longest playoff drought, and their uphill climb to clinch a spot continues tonight as they take on the Washington Capitals. Meanwhile, the Toronto Maple Leafs will get the chance to test themselves against the defending Stanley Cup champions. While hockey fans across the globe take in tonight’s games, teams in minor and foreign leagues are making tweaks to their rosters. We’ll keep track of those transactions here.
- Former Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Juuso Riikola could be headed to Switzerland for next season, according to a report from Swiss outlet Watson. After playing four seasons in the Penguins organization, Riikola returned to Europe this summer, signing with the SHL’s IK Oskarshamn. He’s done well for himself in Sweden, scoring 19 points in 42 games as an alternate captain, and is now rumored to be heading to the SCL Tigers, a team in the top tier of Swiss hockey.
- The San Jose Sharks’ AHL affiliate, the San Jose Barracuda, have signed University of Connecticut captain Roman Kinal, a six-foot-two 24-year-old defenseman, to an ATO agreement. This deal will allow him to be with the Barracuda as they grapple for position in the AHL’s Pacific Division, giving him his first professional experience. As their recent trade for Harvard Blueliner Henry Thrun suggested, the Sharks organization is expected to look to mine talent from the NCAA ranks, so adding an experienced college player furthers that strategy.
- Former Washington Capitals prospect Colby Williams has signed a one-year extension with his current club, KHL side Admiral Vladivostok. The former Regina Pats captain played his first season away from North America this year, after he signed with Vladivostok over the summer. After six seasons patrolling the blueline in the AHL, Williams scored 18 points in 67 games in Russia, a performance that earned him a one-year contract extension.
- After nine seasons and 441 games with the DEL’s Augsburger Panthers, including the last three as their captain, Calgary native Brady Lamb will be playing elsewhere. The team has announced they and Lamb have parted ways. Lamb, who led the DEL in assists by a defenseman in 2017-18, has been a the face of the Panthers in recent years, helping them reach the playoffs twice in his tenure there. Augsburg endured a difficult 2022-23 season, and now they’ll look for a fresh…