Peter Laviolette will be back for a fifth season coaching the Carolina Hurricanes. GM Jim Rutherford said Friday that the team would retain the coach who in 2006 led the Hurricanes to their only Stanley Cup. Speculation swirled for the past month about Laviolette's future after Carolina missed the playoffs in both seasons after its championship run. Brochu's take: Laviolette may get one more year, but if his team doesn't make the playoffs, he'll be let go.
The 'Canes have also signed defenseman Brett Bellemore a three-year, entry level contract. The entry-level deal will pay the 2007 draft pick an average of $500,000 per season at the NHL level and $55,000 per season in the minor leagues. The sixth-round pick also will receive a $100,000 signing bonus. Source
The Florida Panthers have re-signed GM Jacques Martin to a long-term deal. He will remain the GM through the 2011-12 season.
The Pittsburgh Penguins have signed forward Keven Veilleux to an entry-level contract.
Brochu's European rumor roundup:
Carolina Hurricanes goalie John Grahame has signed a two-year contract with Avangard Omsk of the Russian Super League (RSL). Brochu's take: Grahame's play has really tailed off the last few years. Maybe he can get his game back in Russia. Source
According to Russian paper Sport-express, Minnesota Wild forward Chris Simon has signed a one-year contract with Russian club Vityaz. Source
German sources are reporting a rumor that the Nashville Predators are interested in signing forward Florian Busch. Busch was involved in a doping scandal at the current IIHF World Championships. Source
Swedish reports are saying that the Buffalo Sabres are close to signing goalie Jhonas Enroth to a contract. Source
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