The Bears have finished their preseason. Now there are only a few days left of grueling practice before the start of the first KHL game in Bratislava against Slovan, and also until they meet their new defenseman with NHL and KHL experience, Branislav Mezei, who is jumping in to replace Shawn Belle. Medvescak and Belle have ended their contract on mutual terms.
"Some problems having to do with Belle's injury from the past came up just a few days after he arrived in Zagreb, so he wasn't in the position to show us what type of player he is. The club and the player have decided that the priority should be for him to take care of his health and body. He understands that on our budget we need to have every player and be able to count on him one hundred percent. We wish him all the best in the future and hope that he will be back in top shape soon", said Medvescak's sports director Aaron Fox.
Belle's replacement, Branislav Mezei, will join Medvescak's team today. Mezei was born in 1980 in Nitri. He's a member of the Slovenian national team, and in 1999 he was the 10th pick at the NHL draft for the New York Islanders, and in 2000 he played 42 games with them, earning 5 points. As well as the Islanders, he's also played for the Florida Panthers, HC Trinec, HK Dukla Trencin, Barys Astana, HC Plzen, Pardubice, Blues, Lev, Avtomobilist, and Vityaz.
''Branislav Mezei is coming as a replacement for Belle on an eighteen game trial period, and we have the possibility of keeping him for the entire season. He's a player with NHL and KHL experience, he's a physical player that plays aggressively, and at the same time he's skilled at attacks. Two seasons ago he was Avtomobilist's leading defenseman by number of points, 21, and we need that kind of player cadre", said Fox.