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Wild shore up defence by finalizing deal with Keith Ballard, re-signing Jared Spurgeon

Friday, 07.05.2013 / 4:15 PM The Canadian Press

ST. PAUL, Minn. - The Minnesota Wild have used their limited space under the salary cap to sign defenceman Keith Ballard and re-sign defenceman Jared Spurgeon.

The contracts were completed Friday.

Ballard was let go by Vancouver earlier this week. He said he had interest from a half-dozen other teams but picked a two-year deal with the Wild because he believed he best fit with them on the ice. As a bonus, he's a native of Minnesota.

According to a person familiar with Spurgeon's contract, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the team did not release the value of the deal, Spurgeon will get just under $8 million over three seasons. His annual average value is $2.66 million.

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AP Sports Writer John Wawrow in Buffalo, N.Y., contributed to this report.

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