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Ciao, Andrew Raycroft; goalie signs deal to play in Milan, possibly KHL

Greg Wyshynski
Puck Daddy

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Andrew Raycroft won the Calder Trophy in 2004. Eight years later, he's signed a free agent contract with Milano Rossoblu, an Italian hockey team in Serie A that may or may not become part of the KHL.

The Milan hockey team announced the move on its website, and Google Translate does it justice:

The dawn of a new era: Andrew 'Razor' Raycroft between the poles of Milan

And 'officially the dawn of a new era.

Ladies and gentlemen, the new lands of the Milan goalie, and there is much to rub his eyes in luggage loaded into the hold has just under 300 appearances in the NHL, in a hand trolley Calder Memorial Trophy.

Why can't all press releases be written in Italian and then awkwardly translated … sigh …

Raycroft was an unrestricted free agent after last season, in which he split time between the Dallas Stars and the Texas Stars. He was placed on waivers by Dallas in Dec. 2011, as Richard Bachman was called up to be Kari Lehtonen's backup in the NHL. Raycroft was 8-8-1 in 17 games in the AHL.

So he signed in Italy and could eventually become a KHL player.

That's because Milano Rossoblu has been in talks for the last year to become the first Western European team in the KHL, as the burgeoning pro hockey scene in Italy would gain some credibility. However, in April the team said it would not join the KHL for 2012-13.

Said KHL VP Ilya Kochervin:

"Entering the league is a really serious deal, which requires solutions to all sorts of financial, techincal and sports-related issues, including the situation with the stadium," he said."A 4,000-seater arena is not enough to enter the league. They have another big arena there but Milan can't play there yet. Maybe the following season they'll manage to do it."

So for now, Andrew Raycroft will have to settle for getting paid to play hockey in Italy.

Is Luongo aware of these opportunities?

s/t Matias Strozyk

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