Tim Stapleton Agrees To Deal With Russian Squad Dinamo-Minsk
KIRK PENTON ,WINNIPEG SUN
Tim Stapleton, who played 63 games last year with the Winnipeg Jets, has agreed, in principle, to play with HC Dinamo-Minsk in the KHL, a team that also features former NHL’ers such as Lukas Krajicek and Jonas Frogren.
Undrafted, Stapleton played for two seasons with the Green Bay Gamblers of the USHL. Stapleton then represented the University of Minnesota Duluth for four seasons, where he led the team in scoring as a freshman and had back-to-back 40 point seasons.
After a brief stint with the Portland Pirates of the AHL, he signed with Jokerit of the Finnish SM-liiga, completing a tryout which led to a one-year contract. During his first Jokerit season, Stapleton won the SM-liiga silver medal and finished second in playoff scoring.
On June 6, 2008, Stapleton signed as a free agent to the Toronto Maple Leafs for the 2008–09 season. Stapleton was assigned to the Toronto Marlies of the American Hockey League on September 26, 2008. On 26 February 2009, Stapleton played his first career NHL game with the Toronto Maple Leafs, scoring the shootout winner. In his next game Stapleton was credited with his first NHL goal against the Ottawa Senators, goaltender Brian Elliott on February 28, 2009.
On July 1, 2009, Stapleton was traded to the Atlanta Thrashers with Pavel Kubina for Garnet Exelby and Colin Stuart. After signing with the Thrashers, Stapleton was then assigned to affiliate, the Chicago Wolves, for the 2009-10 season.
For the 2010-2011 season, Stapleton signed a Professional Try-out agreement with the San Antonio Rampage of the AHL. On November 30, 2010, Stapleton was signed to a 2-year contract by the Atlanta Thrashers.
On February 27, 2011, Stapleton scored his first goal since April 16, 2010. It was against his former team, the Toronto Maple Leafs. He was invited and accepted an invitation to join the USA hockey team for the 2011 IIHF tournament. On April 10, 2011, Stapleton scored a goal in the 3rd period against the Pittsburgh Penguins. This was the last game of the season for the Thrashers and would be the last goal in their history.
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