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Pens re-sign defenseman Deryk Engelland

We interupt this week my blogging "vacation" to bring news of a signing. From the team:


The Pittsburgh Penguins have signed defenseman Deryk Engelland to a one-year contract extension, it was announced today by executive vice president and general manager Ray Shero.

The new contract goes into effect at the start of the 2010-11 season. The deal is a two-way contract and will pay Engelland $500,000 at the NHL level.

Engelland, 28, made his NHL debut this season with Pittsburgh recording two assists and 17 penalty minutes in nine games during a November call up. He played his first career NHL game at Boston on Nov 10. Engelland posted his first career point (assist) Nov. 16 against Anaheim. He also had a plus-3 rating against the Ducks.

The 6-foot-2, 202-pound defenseman played the majority of the season with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, putting up 11 points (5G-6A), a plus-10 rating and 121 penalty minutes in 71 contests

For a team that only has 3 NHL defensemen (Kris Letang, Brooks Orpik, Alex Goligoski) signed to contracts for next season, retaining Engelland -- who was set to be a unrestricted free agent -- is a good and needed move.

Engelland adds size, feistiness and played well in the brief amount of NHL minutes he was given when the Pens defensive corps was decimated by injuries.

General Manager Ray Shero's plan is to carry 10 NHL capable defensemen, and Engelland adds to that number, which is now four.  It's unlikely that Engelland is really skilled enough all-around to make the NHL club full-time, but he sure is a nice insurance policy and a good leader at the AHL level.