Comets Sign Leighton To PTO
The Utica Comets announced this morning that they have signed netminder Michael Leighton to a PTO, (professional tryout offer) and that they have released goaltender Alex Sakellaropoulos from his.
The Comets have signed goaltender Michael Leighton to a PTO. Additionally, Alex Sakellaropoulos has been released from his PTO.
— Utica Comets (@UticaComets) January 15, 2019
Sakellaropoulos has been with the club since Thatcher Demko was summoned by the parent Canucks, but did not play any minutes for the team.
In Leighton, the Comets are getting a goaltender who is long on experience, but does not have that NHL deal that would allow the parent Canucks to recall him to Vancouver should one of Demko or Jacob Markstrom suffer an injury. It is possible that Leighton could still earn that two-way deal with the Canucks, though I’m not sure how likely that is.
Leighton has suited up for eight NHL clubs since the start of the 2002/2003 season, some of those clubs saw him for more than one stint as well. He has also suited up for no fewer than 11 AHL teams and one KHL team for good measure.
Leighton’s most recent club has been the Ontario Reign, with whom he has appeared in three games this season, posting a goals-against average of 4.46 and a save percentage of 0.859% in one win and one loss. Last season was split between three clubs, playing in nine games with the Syracuse Crunch, five with the Chicago Wolves, and six with the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins. His most recent NHL action was in the 2016/17 season when he played in four games with the Carolina Hurricanes.
Leighton has been around long enough to have been a former teammate of Comets boss, Robert Esche. He will provide the Comets with some veteran experience while the Canucks work to find a better fit who can go up and down between the two clubs if needed.
The Comets are back in action on Wednesday, January, 16th when the Syracuse Crunch is back in town for game number 43 of the season. As always, CanucksArmy will have your Pre-Game and Post-Game reports on game day.