A Carolina Hurricanes blog with occasional news about the rest of the NHL.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Michael Leighton, ... come on down!!!

Since about the beginning of February, it has been a common conjecture in Carolina that John Crackers Grahame had reached the end of the line in Carolina. He appeared in only four of Carolina's last 32 games. Only one of those was a start.

It has become official: John Grahame will not be back. On Friday, he was signed to a two-year deal by Avangard Omsk of the Continental Hockey Association (Russian Super League). Grahame, according to a bad translation from the original Russian, is "owner of Stanley Cup". He will, presumably, sulk on the bench whilst ogling the Russian puck bunnies.

This paves the way for the inevitable signing of Michael Leighton to an NHL contract. Some folks think it would be in Carolina's best interest to go after an aging veteran RFA goaltender so Cam would have a mentor, but I really don't think that Cam needs any more guidance than Tom Barrasso can give him. Leighton, who was the AHL's top goaltender last season, is more than ready to make the jump back to the NHL. Leighton has appeared in 50 NHL games, dating back to 2002-03. Most of those were on the horrendously bad Blackhawks team in the 2003-04 season. That team won only 20 games all season long.

To Grahame's credit, he never complained about his lack of playing time or his obvious #2 status. He didn't complain when he was reassigned to Albany. Things just didn't work out for him here. I wish him well, but I can't say that I'll miss him.

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