Tuesday, August 02, 2005
Rangers sign Weekes, Straka, and Malik
The New York Rangers announced that the club has re-signed restricted free agent goaltender Kevin Weekes, unrestricted free agent forward Martin Straka and unrestricted free agent defenceman Marek Malik.
Terms of the Weekes deal were not disclosed, but Straka signed a one-year deal for $3 million, while Malik signed a three-year deal for $2.5 million per season.
"Kevin has demonstrated continued improvement in each of his last six National Hockey League seasons,'' President and General Manager Glen Sather siad. "His years in Carolina were marked by several standout performances and we feel he can provide stability and leadership to our goaltending position while several of our young prospects develop."
Weekes, 30, appeared in 66 games with the Carolina Hurricanes in 2003-04, posting a record of 23-30-11, along with a 2.33 goals against average. He established new career-highs in appearances (66), wins (23), shutouts (6) and goals against average (2.33), while his six shutouts tied for sixth in the NHL and tied a Carolina franchise record.
Straka, 32, is a veteran of 12 NHL seasons with the Pittsburgh Penguins, Ottawa Senators, New York Islanders, Florida Panthers and Los Angeles Kings. Straka has skated in 730 career NHL games, registering 192 goals and 338 assists for 530 points, along with 272 penalty minutes.
"Martin is a skilled, character player who plays a complete game," stated Sather. "His skill will complement our team’s offense and special teams play. In addition, his strong leadership and willingness to compete every night will have a significant impact on our young talent."
Last season, Straka appeared in 45 games with HC Lassenberger Plzen in the Czech Republic Extraleague last season, registering 16 goals and 18 assists for 34 points, along with 76 penalty minutes. He led the club with 16 tallies and ranked second with 18 assists and 34 points.
Malik, 30, played in nine NHL seasons with the Hartford Whalers, Carolina Hurricanes and Vancouver Canucks, Malik has skated in 464 career NHL games, registering 27 goals and 87 assists for 114 points, along with 388 penalty minutes. As a member of the Hartford/Carolina organization, he recorded 17 goals and 60 assists for 77 points, along with 291 penalty minutes in 317 contests.
"Marek is a big, strong defenseman who adds a physical presence to our blueline," stated Sather. "His size and skill will bolster our penalty killing unit. He also provides our team with strong leadership and he will be able to work well with our young prospects."