Thiessen Signs 1-Year, 2-Way Deal

PITTSBURGH (KDKA/AP) — The Pittsburgh Penguins say defenseman Matt Niskanen has signed a two-year, $4.3 million deal that will keep him with the team until 2014.

Niskanen, 25, came to the Penguins from the Dallas Stars in February of 2011 in the same trade that brought forward James Neal to the team.

In his first full season with the Penguins, Niskanen had four goals, 17 assists and a plus-9 rating in 75 regular season games.

Niskanen is considered a key part of the blue line after the Penguins shipped Zbynek Michalek to Phoenix last week in a late-night trade on the first day of the NHL Draft.

Niskanen has played in 370 career NHL games. Before his NHL days, he played two seasons at the University of Minnesota-Duluth.

The Penguins also announced Saturday that they have re-signed goaltender Brad Thiessen to a one-year, two-way deal worth $525,000 at the NHL level.

Thiessen made his NHL debut back in February in a victory over the Columbus Blue Jackets.

The 26-year-old British Columbia native signed with the Penguins’ organization as an undrafted free agent in April of 2009. He has appeared in 117 career AHL regular season games for the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins.

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