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Avalanche Signs Hejduk

by Staff Writer / Colorado Avalanche
The Colorado Avalanche Hockey Club announced today that the team has signed forward Milan Hejduk to a one-year contract through the 2011-12 season.

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Hejduk, 35, just completed his 12th season with the Avalanche, finishing third on the club in both points (56) and goals (22-tied).  He appeared in 71 games and led Colorado in power-play goals (10) and power-play points (24).  The Czech Republic native reached the 20-goal mark for the 11th consecutive season, tying Joe Sakic's franchise record.  Hejduk's run of 11 straight 20-goal campaigns is tied for the second-longest active streak in the league behind Jarome Iginla (12).

Hejduk during the 2010-11 season passed Peter Forsberg for fourth place on the franchise’s all-time scoring list, became Pepsi Center’s all-time scoring leader, reached his 400th career assist and was the first player in Colorado Avalanche history to appear in 900 career games.

“Milan has been a big part of our organization throughout the past 12 seasons,” said Avalanche General Manager/Executive Vice President Greg Sherman.  “He’s been one of the top goal scorers in the NHL over the last decade and we look forward to having him back next season.”

Originally selected by the Quebec Nordiques in the fourth round (87th overall) of the 1994 Entry Draft, Hejduk has recorded 357 goals and 400 assists for 757 points in 910 career games.  He ranks third in franchise history in games, is fourth in both goals and points, and ranks fifth in assists.  Hejduk is the franchise’s all-time leader in regular season overtime goals with nine and his 58 career game-winning tallies rank second in team history behind only Sakic (86).  Hejduk is third in power-play goals (132) and fourth in career plus/minus (+120).

Hejduk helped the Avalanche win the 2001 Stanley Cup championship.  He captured the franchise’s first-ever Maurice “Rocket” Richard Trophy as the NHL’s leading goal scorer with 50 in 2002-03.  Hejduk was named to the NHL’s Second All-Star Team in 2002-03 and was a Calder Trophy finalist and a member of the NHL All-Rookie Team in 1998-99.  Hejduk has competed in three NHL All-Star Games: 2000, 2001 and 2009.  He has scored 343 goals since the start of the 1999-2000 season, the fourth-highest total in the NHL behind Iginla (422), Marian Hossa (373) and Ilya Kovalchuk (369).

In franchise playoff history, Hejduk is tied for third in goals (34), ranks fourth in points (76) and is fifth in both assists (42) and games played (112).

“My family and I are very excited to continue my career here in Denver,” said Hejduk.  “I believe in this organization and our young players and look forward to helping the team in any way that I can.”

A three-time Olympian, Hejduk won a gold medal with the Czech Republic at the 1998 Winter Games in Nagano, Japan and a bronze medal at the 2006 Olympics in Torino, Italy.
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