NHL notes: Swedish team scrapes up cash for Lundqvist
|New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist holds the Vezina Trophy during the 2012 NHL Awards show at the Wynn Las Vegas Resort in Las Vegas, Nevada June 20, 2012. (REUTERS)
Swedish Elite League team Frolunda has scraped enough cash together in the hopes of signing New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist.
According to the New York Times, Frolunda needs an estimated $30,000 per month to cover the cost of insuring Lundqvist's contract, which has two years and $13.75 million remaining on it. The team put together financing -- a consortium of sponsors will cover the costs -- for insurance and will now pursue the Swedish goalie.
Don Meehan, Lundqvist's agent, told the Times there was "nothing to report" but the 30-year-old has a history with Frolunda, having led the team to a league title during the last NHL lockout, in 2004-05. Lundqvist was the league MVP that season.
Frolunda has already signed Colorado Avalanche forward Matt Duchene, one of two locked-out NHLers playing in the league. MoDo signed Alex Steen of the St. Louis Blues.
YAKUPOV ROOKIE OF WEEK
Last week, Nail Yakupov was banned from playing in the KHL.
This week, he's winning the league's weekly award that goes to the top rookie. Been quite the last few days for the Edmonton Oilers forward, the top pick in the 2012 NHL draft.
Yakupov scored three goals in two games for Neftekhimik Nizhnekamsk last week and averaged nearly 18 minutes of ice time. The goals were Yakupov's first points in the KHL.
The KHL had banned Yakupov, who played with the OHL's Sarnia Sting the last two years, from playing because the league hadn't received his transfer paperwork. The situation was resolved when Hockey Canada agreed to sign his transfer.
Former NHLer Kevin Dallman of SKA St. Petersburg was named the league's top defenceman for the week.
ZETTERBERG GOES SWISS
Detroit Red Wings forward Henrik Zetterberg, a member of the NHLPA's negotiating committee, is taking his puck to Switzerland.
Zetterberg has agreed to join EV Zug of the top Swiss league and will fly to Europe on Friday. The 32-year-old said the only place he'd consider playing during the NHL lockout is Switzerland.
"I think, like I was saying before, I wanted to wait a little bit before I went and played (overseas)," Zetterberg told the Detroit Free Press Monday. "But in the last few weeks, the indication is it's going to get tougher and tougher to get spots over there, especially with the contract I have and insurance costs.
"Late last night, me and my wife ... talked about it, and we said, 'Just give it a shot,' and it's going to be fun to go and play some hockey."
Zetterberg will join Red Wings rookie forward Damien Brunner and Montreal Canadiens defenceman Raphael Diaz in Zug.
VORACEK OUT MONTH
Jakub Voracek's KHL team confirmed Monday that the Philadelphia Flyers forward would be out for a month with a knee injury.
The severity of Voracek's injury, which happened when he was playing for Lev Praha against SKA St. Petersburg on the weekend, was orginally thought to be minor. Details remain sketchy but CSNPhilly.com is reporting that Voracek has told people th einjury is worse than what his agent, Petr Svoboda, has been saying.
That seemed to be confirmed by the KHL club.
"Centre Jakub Voracek suffered a knee injury in the third period and the early indication is he'll be out of the lineup about four weeks," a statement on the team website said.
The Prague-based team released Calgary Flames forward Jiri Hudler earlier this month after suffering an abdominal injury that was expected to keep him out a month.
UK LOOP GETS TWO
The Glasgow-based Braehead Clan of the British Elite League have signed Detroit Red Wings forward Drew Miller while their league rivals, the Sheffield Steelers, inked Tom Sestito of the Philadelphia Flyers.
The signing bring the NHL contingent in the low-level pro league to three. Anthony Stewart of the Carolina Hurricanes previously signed with the Nottingham Panthers.
Miller, 28, is expected to make his debut with the Clan this weekend against Dundee and Edinburgh.
"Not only is this great for the team and the fans, but it is also a fantastic opportunity for the players to train and play in games with a guy who is a current NHL star," a team spokesman said on its website. "We are really looking forward to Drew's arrival and we hope that the fans will come out and show their support for both Drew and the team. This truly is a huge thing for this club and for hockey fans in the Gardner Conference, and we are delighted to have Drew on board."
Sestito announced his signing with Sheffield Monday on his Twitter account.
St. Louis Blues forward Matt D'Agostini has signed with SC Riessersee of the German second division. Three other locked-out NHLers -- Philly's Wayne Simmonds, St. Louis's Chris Stewart and San Jose's T.J. Galiardi -- are already playing in the league ... Dallas Stars defenceman Stephane Robidas signed with HIFK Helsinki Monday Robidas played in Frankfurt during the last NHL lockout ... New York Rangers forward Brandon Dubinsky has elected to stay in North America to play during the NHL lockout. He'll join the Alaska Aces of the ECHL.