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Nick Johnson will play with ECHL Idaho

Dec 11, 2012, 9:36 PM EDT

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Source: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images North America Getty Images

While Nick Johnson waits to see if the lockout will end before his one-year, two-way deal with the Phoenix Coyotes does, he will play for the ECHL Idaho Steelheads, according to the Steelheads’ website.

Johnson had 26 points and 45 penalty minutes in 77 games with the Minnesota Wild last season. Before the 2011-12 campaign, he had participated in just 10 NHL contests.

The ECHL is turning into a popular destination for locked-out NHLers who want to get some playing time without leaving the continent.

Within the last week alone Winnipeg’s Mark Stuart, St. Louis’ Ryan Reaves, and Montreal’s Colby Armstrong have found temporary homes in the league.

Johnson is expected to make his Idaho debut on Wednesday against Nate Thompson, Joey Crabb and the Alaska Aces.

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