Rangers Re-sign Five Players
It's been a busy week for the Rangers. Tuesday, the club announced the re-signing of defenseman Tom Poti, agreeing on a one-year deal worth 2.3 million. He was acquired from Edmonton on March 19, 2002 along with Rem Murray in exchange for Mike York and a 2002 fourth round pick.
In '02-03, Poti finished tied for seventh in scoring among NHL defensemen, posting career highs in assists (37) and points (48), making his first ever All Star appearance. The following season, he had 24 points (10-14-24) in 67 games.
As a Ranger, the 28-year-old Worcester Massachusetts native has recorded 22 goals and 58 assists for 80 points over 158 contests. For his seven-year NHL career with Edmonton and New York, Poti has 185 points (49-136-185) in 443 games.
Wednesday, the club reached terms with RFA Jozef Balej on a one-year deal. The 23-year-old Balej became a Ranger on March 2, 2004 when the team traded Alexei Kovalev to Montreal in exchange for him and a 2004 second round pick (Bruce Graham). In 13 games with the Rangers, Balej tallied a goal and four assists including his first career goal against Martin Brodeur of the Devils on March 15, 2004 at Madison Square Garden. Last season in the AHL, the Czech born right wing scored 20 goals and added 22 assists in 69 games for Hartford.
Thursday, the Rangers re-signed Jamie Lundmark, Garth Murray and Chad Wiseman.
Lundmark, 24, was drafted ninth overall by the club in 1999. He has appeared in 111 career games for the Rangers registering 10 goals and 19 assists for 29 points. Last season with Hartford, the Edmonton native scored 14 goals and 27 assists for 41 points in 64 games.
Murray, 22, was selected by the team in the third round of the 2001 Draft. In '03-04, he made his NHL debut versus the Sabres on January 30, 2004. In 20 career games, the Regina junior product notched his first NHL goal against Pittsburgh on March 21. With Hartford last season, he tallied nine points (4-5-9) and racked up 182 penalty minutes.
Wiseman was acquired from San Jose in exchange for Nils Ekman on August 12, 2003. The 24-year-old Ontario native has appeared in eight NHL contests (four with San Jose in '02-03) including four with the Blueshirts in '03-04, registering his first career goal and point against the Devils' Martin Brodeur on January 15, 2004. Last season, he scored 17 goals and 16 assists for 33 points in 60 games with Hartford.
Rangers Sign Prucha, Holt and Pikkarainen
At a team function welcoming back Adam Graves as part of the organization with season subcribers on hand at MSG, Rangers Assistant GM Don Maloney confirmed the signings of forward Petr Prucha and netminder Chris Holt. Prucha was selected in the 8th round of the 2002 Draft out of the Czech Republic. Holt was taken in the sixth round of 2003 and starred at the University of Nebraska-Omaha the past two seasons....Blueshirts signed Finnish rookie free agent defenseman Hannu Pikkarainen to a contract.