The summer rolls on, as does the free agent signing period. While the Tampa Bay Lightning are pretty much set, there have been a number of roster moves across the league that we have not made mention of. Our focus has been on the Lightning primarily since July 2. Even with this non-Lightning roster move, we somewhat continue that trend today.
You remember defenseman Paul Ranger, right? From the 2005-06 rookie class to an enigmatic departure from the Lightning roster in the fall of 2009, Ranger's legacy with the club has become a historical quirk in team history that goes along with Phil Esposito's fuzzy-fax incident among other things. Nothing was heard of Paul in the hockey world until the summer of 2012 when he helped coach a bantam hockey team in Canada. He re-surfaced as a player in 2012-13 with the AHL Toronto Marlies and returned to the NHL last season with the Toronto Maple Leafs. His 53-game NHL season was marked with plenty of scratching from the Leafs lineup as well as 6 goals and 8 assists.
But his one year deal with the Maple Leafs is kaput. Ranger is now on the run again, but this time he's sticking with the game of hockey on his journey:
Paul Ranger has agreed to a 2 year deal to play in Geneva, Switzerland.— Darren Dreger (@DarrenDreger) July 15, 2014
This doesn't strike me as odd, as many players see Switzerland as a legit option now (hello Ryan Shannon) as well as coaches (good day to you, Guy Boucher). I do have to wonder if the Edmonton Oilers (coached by Dallas Eakins, who had been Ranger's head coach when he was with the Marlies) had made any overtures to Ranger to help bolster their woeful defebse. They had been seen as front-runners to sign Paul a year ago because of that Eakins connection.
At any rate, best of luck to Ranger in his new adventure.