SUN Hockey Pool

Canadiens add to goaltending logjam

DAVE POLLARD, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 5:42 PM ET

Karri Ramo is the newest member of the Montreal Canadiens' minor-league goalie gaggle.

Sort of.

The Canadiens picked up Ramo from the Tampa Bay Lightning in a swap that sent Hamilton Bulldogs puck stopper Cedric Desjardins to the Sunshine State. Ramo, a 24-year-old Finn who has 49 career NHL games under his belt, put together a 2.11 goals-against average and .913 save percentage while going 21-17-4 with Avangard Omsk in the KHL last season.

And he is committed to staying in Omsk for another year.

But with Alex Auld, Curtis Sanford and Czech prospect Robert Mayer already jostling to back up Carey Price – should the Habs ever get him signed – do the Canadiens even need another plug between the pipes? What, exactly, was the point of this deal, at least from Montreal's perspective?

It's probably better for everyone involved that Ramo will stay in Russia for the 2010-11 season. Sure, Russia's a little colder than the Hammer but, hey, the pay is probably better.

RUSSIAN HOME

Pittsburgh Penguins coach Dan Bylsma knows the importance of the personal touch.

So when Bylsma was in Europe for a family vacation, he decided to make a detour to visit Evgeni Malkin in Moscow.

“I went on a family vacation to Europe and had the opportunity to visit Moscow and see Geno,” Bylsma said on the Penguins website. “We had a lot of fun during the two days I got to spend with him.”

Malkin took his coach to visit the “Penguins Support Crew,” a team fan club based in Russia, and the two spent some time chatting. No word whether Bylsma has some 'splainin' to do about the Pens losing stud defenceman Sergei Gonchar, though.

VISIT TO THE CAPITAL

Unrestricted free agent Willie Mitchell paid a visit to the Washington Capitals Tuesday, according to Corey Masisak of CSNwashington.com.

Mitchell, the ex-Canucks defenceman, is touring the continent looking for a job. The Caps practice facility in Arlington, Va. was just the latest stop for Mitchell, who is expected to decide where he'll sign by the end of the week.

The Los Angeles Kings, San Jose Sharks and the Canucks have all reportedly shown interest in Mitchell, though, so the Caps could have some competition if they hope to sign him.

HALL OF FAMER

Former NHL official Ken Bodendistel is going into the Hall of Fame.

The Guelph, Ont. Sports Hall of Fame, that is.

Normally that wouldn't be huge news but Bodendistel, now the Ontario Hockey League's senior officiating manager, has an interesting connection to one of the NHL's most infamous moments, the 1969 stick-swinging incident between Wayne Maki and Ted Green.

Bodendistel was refereeing just his second game – he worked as a linesman prior to that – when the exchange that left Green with a fractured skull and Maki facing criminal charges.

“It was a heck of way to start an NHL career,” Bodendistel told the Guelph Mercury. “I spent four hours on the witness stand at the criminal trial.”

Bodendistel will be inducted into the Hall of Fame in late October.


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