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The New Jersey Devils have re-signed three-time All-Star center Patrik Elias. A league source tells ESPN.com's Pierre LeBrun that Elias received a three-year deal worth $16.5 million.
Elias, who was set to become an unrestricted free agent Friday, has spent his entire 17-year career with the Devils and is the franchise's all-time leader in goals (375) and assists (555). He ranks third in franchise history with 1,090 games played.
"To [general manager] Lou [Lamoriello], all my teammates and Devils fans, I'm excited to sign a new contract and be back with New Jersey," Elias said in a statement released through his agent. "This year marks my 17th year with the Devils, and it's very special to be a member of one organization for my entire career. We've shared some great moments together, and I look forward to working with everyone to create new ones. Go Devils!"
|Patrik Elias, who is the New Jersey Devils' all-time leading scorer, re-signed with the team before he was set to become a free agent.|
Elias, 37, led the Devils with 36 points last season, registering 14 goals and 22 assists in 48 games.
A member of two Stanley Cup-winning teams in New Jersey, Elias said late last season that he was hopeful of re-signing with the Devils, whom he started his career with in 1995 when he was drafted in the second round.
New Jersey also re-signed veteran forward Dainius Zubrus to a three-year, $9.3 million contract. A person familiar with the deal revealed the terms to The Associated Press on the condition of anonymity because the Devils didn't release those numbers.
Zubrus is a 16-year NHL veteran, who has spent the past six seasons with New Jersey.
New Jersey is expected to lose forward David Clarkson, who will test free agency on Friday. Forwards Steve Sullivan, Alexei Ponikarovsky and defenseman Marek Zidlicky are also eligible to become unrestricted free agents.
Also Thursday, The Newark Star-Ledger reported that the Devils bought out the final year of goaltender Johan Hedberg's contract. He was set to count $1.4 million against the salary cap.
Hedberg, 40, the backup to Martin Brodeur the past three seasons, was made expendable when the Devils acquired Cory Schneider in a draft-day trade with the Vancouver Canucks.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.