Mats Zuccarello, who never quite fit on John Tortorella's team over two years, and when he did have chances, couldn't stick, has signed a widely-expected deal with the KHL. The team is Mettalurg Magnitogorsk, and the terms are for a year with an option and a NHL out clause, I'm told.
Zuccarello, an RFA with a $1.75 million salary, probably knew he wasn't going to be qualified even before suffering a fractured wrist blocking a shot against Buffalo on March 23, a break that sidelined him for eight weeks, and started looking. Some NHL team might take a chance next season, you never know, but when he was shopped this year, no takers.
In the fold is Oscar Lindberg, a two-way center who was 5-9-14 in 41 games for Skelleftea in the Swedish Elite League. He's 20 and was acquired from the Coyotes last May for prospect Ethan Werek. Phoenix had drafted him in the second round.
Tomorrow, I'll be in Newark, where I was on Wednesday and today catching up with the Devils and Kings for Game 2. So if you're interested, I'll have a story in Newsday (a preview is on newsday.com shortly) on Sunday and may toss up some tweets during the match Saturday. Critical game for the Hell-raisers, but still think the Kings will sip from the Cup.