Sports Outside the Beltway

Florida Panther Forward Richard Zednik signs with Russian league team

Zednik had been playing in the NHL since 1996. From the AP-

Florida Panthers forward Richard Zednik is leaving the NHL to join the Russian league.

Russian hockey club Lokomotiv of the KHL announced Thursday it has signed Zednik to a two-year contract.

Also Thursday, Zednik was named a finalist for the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy, given in honor of the late Minnesota North Stars player. The award honors “the player who best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to hockey.” The winner will be announced June 18 in Las Vegas.

Zednik had 17 goals in 70 games a season after his carotid artery was sliced by a teammate’s skate blade during a Feb. 10, 2008, game in Buffalo.

Zednik won’t be the last roster move for the Panthers this off season. The team has many unrestricted free agents, the most prominent of which is Jay Bouwmeester who I will be greatly surprised if he is still in a Panther uniform next season.

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