PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Today marks the start of free agency in the National Hockey League.
Many teams are scrambling to snap up some of the biggest names on the market. While the Pittsburgh Penguins are not one of those teams, they did lock up a valuable piece of their Stanley Cup championship this afternoon.
According to the Penguins’ official website, General Manager Jim Rutherford has signed a three-year extension.
The new deal will keep him with the team through the 2018-19 season.
Rutherford made several key moves throughout the season to transform the Penguins into a Stanley Cup contender. In fact, 40 of the 73 goals the Penguins scored in the playoffs came from players Rutherford acquired.
In addition to the Stanley Cup, Rutherford won the NHL’s General Manager of the Year Award.
As for the team on the ice, the Penguins did make some minor moves today.
A new face to the team is defenseman Stuart Percy. The 23-year-old is a former first round pick of the Toronto Maple Leafs.
The two-way deal is for one year and will pay him $575,000 at the NHL level.
In three seasons with Toronto’s AHL affiliate, Percy had 64 points (10 goals, 54 assists) in 177 games.
Both are two-way, one-year deals worth $575,000 at the NHL level.
One player departing the Penguins is defenseman Ben Lovejoy, who signed a three-year deal with the New Jersey Devils.
1 p.m. UPDATE:
The Penguins brought back a familiar face by signing defenseman David Warsofsky to a one-year deal.
The two-way contract is worth $575,000 at the NHL level.
The 26-year-old started last season with the Penguins, but was claimed off waivers by the New Jersey Devils on Feb. 29.
1:06 p.m. UPDATE:
Another defenseman joins the ranks with the signing of Cameron Gaunce to a one-year, two-way contract. It will also pay him $575,000 at the NHL level.
Gaunce, 26, spent last season with the AHL’s Portland Pirates, where he had 37 points (2 goals, 35 assists) in 75 games. He was also named an an AHL All-Star.
He was originally drafted by the Colorado Avalanche in 2008, but has only appeared in 20 NHL games.
1:32 p.m. UPDATE
Another update and yes, it’s another defenseman.
Continuing with the theme of the day, Chad Ruhwedel has signed a one-year, two-way deal worth $575,000 at the NHL level.
Ruhwedel, 26, spent the last four years with the Buffalo Sabres’ organization, where he appeared in 33 NHL games.
In 59 games with the Rochester Americans last year, he had 10 goals and 16 assists. In 178 career games in the AHL, he racked up 24 goals and 66 assists.
2:48 p.m. UPDATE
Backup goaltender Jeff Zatkoff has also found a new home.
According to TSN’s Bob McKenzie, Zatkoff has signed a two-year deal with the Los Angeles Kings.
Jeff Zatkoff, two years, $900K AAV, to LAK.
— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) July 1, 2016
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