Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins Sign Tangradi, Bortuzzo, Strait, Thiessen and Zatkoff

Paul Bereswill - Getty Images

5 locked out players have a home in the American Hockey League.

From the team:

WILKES-BARRE, Pa. – The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins announced that they have signed goaltenders Brad Thiessen and Jeff Zatkoff, defensemen Robert Bortuzzo and Brian Strait and forward Eric Tangradi to American Hockey League contracts.

This wasn't totally unexpected and is a move that will allow the five to play in the American Hockey League if when the lockout begins to cancel regular season NHL games.

Still it seems sort of odd though that the NHL owners can say: "Eric Tangradi, Brian Strait and all, YOU'RE LOCKED OUT" and then 11 days later be all like "well, if you wanna come play for our minor league team, that's cool too".

For the players, a pay check is a pay check and a lot of the bargaining issues aren't their fault, it's way above their paygrade. It will also help for these guys (especially the three skaters, all of whom have aspirations of making the NHL team whenever that is) to stay in the organization and keep their name and play sharp in what will be an AHL with an influx of talent due to this lockout.

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