The Nashville Predators could be without centre Mike Fisher until the middle of the upcoming season due to a foot injury.
The team announced Monday that Fisher ruptured an Achilles tendon last week while training, and he underwent surgery Thursday. The recovery period is expected to last four to six months, meaning Fisher is likely to miss at least 20 games in the 2014-15 season.
General manager David Poile told the Tennessean, "I hope we have enough depth. We will give certain guys a chance to be successful and give Mike a chance to get back."
Fisher, 34, posted a career-high 29 assists last season, and he added 20 goals. It was his sixth campaign with at least 20 goals.
The Predators' alternate captain is halfway through a two-year, $8 million contract.
Nashville did not land a centre in recent days despite making runs at Jason Spezza, Ryan Kesler and Paul Stastny, the Tennessean reported. Spezza was dealt from the Ottawa Senators to the Dallas Stars, and Kesler was traded from the Vancouver Canucks to the Anaheim Ducks. Stastny, formerly of the Colorado Avalanche, signed a four-year, $28 million free agent deal with the St. Louis Blues.
"We're not going to sign a player for the sake of signing," Poile told the Tennessean about replacing Fisher. "It has to be a fit."
SHARKS, WINGELS AGREE
The San Jose Sharks have signed restricted free-agent forward Tommy Wingels to a three-year contract.
While financial details were not disclosed, CSN Bay Area reported on Saturday that the deal is worth $7.4 million, with an average salary cap hit of $2.47 million.
Wingels, 26, had 16 goals and 22 assists in 77 games last season to go along with a team-high 218 hits.
He was also used as a penalty killer and on the second power-play unit, and is one of several young players expected to play an increased role next season.
In 157 career NHL games, Wingels has 24 goals and 36 assists.
Restricted free agent defenceman Jason Demers has also filed for salary arbitration with the Sharks for next season.
CANUCKS ADD WEISBROD
The Vancouver Canucks have announced John Weisbrod will join the franchise as its new vice president of player personnel.
Weisbrod was previously the assistant general manager for the Calgary Flames before being fired along with general manager Jay Feaster last December.
Weisbrod and Canucks general manager Jim Benning previously worked together in the scouting department with the Boston Bruins.
Weisbrod has also served as the general manager for the NBA's Orlando Magic.
In Vancouver, he joins a front office that includes president of hockey operations Trevor Linden, Benning, Stan Smyl (director of player development) and assistant general managers Lorne Henning and Laurence Gilman.
Feaster was named the executive director of community hockey development for the Tampa Bay Lightning on Monday, with the stated goal of working with local youth to help grow hockey in the Tampa Bay area.
HAWKS HIRE WAITE
The Chicago Blackhawks have hired Jimmy Waite as the team's goaltending coach.
Waite appeared in 58 games with the Blackhawks over parts of eight seasons from 1988-97.
"I'm very excited to come back to the Chicago Blackhawks, the team that drafted me in 1987" Waite said. "I look forward to working with Corey (Crawford) and Antti (Raanta), and to help contribute to the success of this organization."
Waite spent the past three seasons as the goaltending coach for the Chicoutimi Sagueneens of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League following the end of his 22-year playing career.
"We are pleased to welcome Jimmy back to our organization in his new role," Blackhawks vice president and general manager Stan Bowman said. "He has over two decades of professional hockey experience and will be a great addition to our coaching staff."
Waite is also the younger brother of former Blackhawks goaltending coach Stephane Waite, who joined Montreal's organization last year.
PREDS INK VOLCHENKOV
The Nashville Predators have signed defenceman Anton Volchenkov to a one-year contract worth $1 million.
Volchenkov, 32, had eight assists and 20 penalty minutes in 56 games for the Devils in 2013-14, his fourth season in New Jersey. In 650 career games for the Devils and Ottawa Senators, the hard-hitting defenceman has posted 19 goals, 126 points and 424 penalty minutes.
Earlier in his career, Volchenkov skated with current Predators forwards Matt Cullen and Mike Fisher.
The Devils released Volchenkov in June. He had two years left on his contract that would have paid him $4.25 million per season.
JACKETS SIGN TROPP
The Columbus Blue Jackets have signed forward Corey Tropp to a two-year contract. Financial terms were not disclosed.
Tropp, 24, scored two goals and finished with 11 points in 53 games last season. He was claimed off waivers from the Buffalo Sabres on Nov. 28 last season and went on to lead the Blue Jackets with a plus-11 rating in 44 games, steadily moving up the lineup with his hard-nosed approach.
"You have to go into the hard areas, and I've always had that mentality ever since I was a little kid," Tropp said in April. "Even then, I was going into the corner 100 mph and trying to get it."
The 6-foot, 185-pound Tropp was originally a third-round pick in the 2007 draft.
The Blue Jackets also signed defenceman Cody Goloubef to a one-year, two-way contract. Goloubef, 24, has one goal in 17 career NHL games spanning three seasons with the Blue Jackets.
AVS INK D-MAN NOREAU
The Colorado Avalanche on Monday signed defenceman Maxim Noreau to a two-year, $1.25 million contract, according to the Denver Post.
Noreau, 27, has spent the past three seasons playing in the Swiss-A league.
Noreau went undrafted in the NHL. He has played six games over parts of two seasons with the Minnesota Wild before heading overseas.
Noreau scored 18 goals and 52 points for the Houston Aeros of the American Hockey League during the 2009-10 season.