Las Vegas Wranglers sign NHL goalie Ilya Bryzgalov - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU

Las Vegas Wranglers sign NHL goalie Ilya Bryzgalov

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Ilya Bryzgalov appears with the Philadelphia Flyers. (Las Vegas Wranglers) Ilya Bryzgalov appears with the Philadelphia Flyers. (Las Vegas Wranglers)

No one saw it coming. The Las Vegas Wranglers on Thursday announced via their website they have signed former NHL star Ilya Bryzgalov to a tryout agreement.

The Russian netminder can now participate in training camp.

Bryzgalov, 33, was the 44th overall pick in the 2000 NHL Draft. He won the 2007 Stanley Cup with the Anaheim Ducks, later putting up impressive numbers with the Phoenix Coyotes. He won a bronze medal at the 2002 Winter Olympics with Russia.

Bryzgalov most recently spent two seasons with the Philadelphia Flyers, signing a nine-year, $51 million contract. The goaltender never gelled in Philadelphia, and the team used a compliance buyout to buy the seven remaining years of his contract.

The, 6'3", 210-pound goaltender became the breakout star of HBO's 24/7 series, which chronicled the Philadelphia Flyers' preparation for the 2012 NHL Winter Classic.

"Having a world-class player like Ilya in camp is a great opportunity for our organization and our players," said Wranglers head coach and general manager Mike Madill.

"Mike Madill's passion for the game, his team, and his excitement about training camp were a big part of the reasons why I chose to participate in the Wranglers training camp," Bryzgalov said. "Having missed camp this year, an experience like this is critical for me to be ready for NHL play, and I can't wait to get on the ice."

"To be clear, I intend to return to the NHL, and be ready for game action when an NHL opportunity opens up," Bryzgalov continued. "I intend to work hard while I am here in Las Vegas, and to return the support I have received from my family, the many fans who have reached out to me with words of encouragement, and the Wranglers organization with actions, not words."

The Wranglers open their 11th season on Saturday, Oct. 19 against the Utah Grizzlies at Orleans Arena. For tickets and information, visit

Who will be in net when the Wranglers take to the ice remains to be seen.

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