DETROIT – The Detroit Red Wings appear to have landed talented Swiss forward Damien Brunner. But they won't know for sure until July 1, when he can sign with any NHL team.
Brunner, a highly sought undrafted free agent, told Swiss media that he has agreed to a one-year, two-way deal with the Red Wings.
Brunner, 26, isn't big (5-11, 180), but he's a fast-skating, highly skilled winger who shoots right-handed. He led the Swiss-A league in scoring with 24 goals and 60 points in 45 games for Zug. He's a Jiri Hudler-type of player, except with speed.
Brunner has one year remaining on his contract with the Swiss club but told media that he has an out clause. As many as a half-dozen NHL teams, including Tampa Bay and Pittsburgh, were interested in the undrafted forward.
The Red Wings watched him at this year's World Championships and liked what they saw. There's no telling how he would adjust to playing on a smaller rink in North America, but there's little risk in signing him.
General manager Ken Holland said they are having “ongoing discussions.''
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