Andrei Mezin signs with KHL’s Avangard Omsk
11:13, — Sport
Belarusian goaltender Andrei Mezin has signed a one-year contract with KHL’s Avangard Omsk which is struggling this season, currently ranked 11th in the Eastern Conference.
Andrei Mezin has become a teammate to another Belarusian hockey player Sergei Kostitsyn.
According to the official website of HC Avangard Omsk, the club signed in the 39-year-old goalie till the end of the 2013-14 KHL season. On 11 October the Belarusian goaltender held the first skate with his new team.
Last season Chelyabinsk-born Andrei Mezin defended the colors of his native city, HC Traktor Chelyabinsk.
Apart from Andrei Mezin, the Omsk team has signed in one more goalie, Canadian Mathieu Garon, after parting ways with Finnish goaltender Teemu Lassila.
Andrei Mezin has so far played for 16 clubs, starting his professional career in HC Khimik Novopolotsk. He then played in the minor hockey leagues in North America: Roanoke Express, Flint Generals, Fort-Wayne Komets, Las Vegas Thunder, Rochester Americans, Detroit Vipers. The goaltender then spent four seasons in Europe playing in Germany’s ice hockey league DEL: Nurnberg Ice Tigers and Berlin Capitals. The 2002-03 season the Belarusian goaltender spent in the Russian Superleague playing for Ak Bars Kazan. The following season, 2003-04, Andrei Mezin played for HC Ceske Budejovice before returning to Russia to play for SKA Saint Petersburg, Salavat Yulaev Ufa, and Metallurg Magnitogorsk with which he joined the Kontinental Hockey League. From 2009 to 2012 Andrei Mezin played for Dinamo Minsk in the Kontinental Hockey League.
Andrei Mezin played at the Olympic Games as part of the Belarusian men’s ice hockey team in Nagano (1998), Salt Lake City (2002), and Vancouver (2010). He also took part in IIHF world championships in 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009 and 2010. Andrei Mezin was named the best player of the 2009 IIHF World Championship. Andrei Mezin, with his bright performance, has earned deep respect among Belarusian fans. His name is associated with numerous successes of the national team, including a sensational 43- victory over Team Sweden mainly consisting of NHL super stars in the quarterfinal match of the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City. Andrei Mezin has been named Belarus Player of the Year four times.