COLUMBUS, OHIO – The Columbus Blue Jackets have signed defenseman Kris Russell to a three-year contract extension, General Manager Scott Howson announced October 17. As is club policy, terms were not disclosed.
Russell, 22, has registered four goals and 28 assists for 32 points and 42 penalty minutes in 137 career games with the Blue Jackets. He notched 2-19-21 and 28 penalty minutes in 66 games with Columbus last season. His point total ranked third among club defensemen and nearly doubled the output of his rookie season in 2008-09 when he collected 2-8-10 and 14 penalty minutes in 67 games.
"Kris is an important player for us, not only in the present, but in the future," said Howson. "We believe he has just scratched the surface of his potential."
Prior to his professional career, the Caroline, Alberta native tallied 76-120-196, 142 penalty minutes and a cumulative plus/minus rating of +50 in 241 career games with the Medicine Hat Tigers of the Western Hockey League. He was a back-to-back winner of the Bill Hunter Memorial Trophy as the WHL’s defenseman of the year in 2005-06 and 2006-07 and won the Four Broncos Trophy as the WHL Player of the Year leading the Tigers to the WHL championship in 2006-07.
The club's third pick, 67th overall, in the 2005 Entry Draft has represented Team Canada at the World Junior Championships. He collected 1-3-4, four penalty minutes and was +6 in six games at the 2006 tournament and added 4-2-6 and was +3 in six games in 2007, helping Canada win the gold medal in both tournaments.
The Blue Jackets return action tonight when they host the Los Angeles Kings. Game time from Nationwide Arena is set for 7 p.m. ET. Live coverage on FOX Sports Ohio HD will begin with the Blue Jackets Live pre-game show starting at 6:30 p.m. The game will also be broadcast live on the Wheeling Island Hotel Casino Blue Jackets Radio Network and flagship stations WBNS-AM, Sports Radio 1460 The Fan and WWCD-FM, CD101, and online at BlueJackets.com.
Blue Jackets single game tickets are on sale now at the Nationwide Arena Ticket Office, The FOX Sports Ohio Blue Line Team Store at The Mall at Tuttle Crossing, ticket outlets at the Chiller Ice Rinks and all Ticketmaster Ticket Centers. Fans can also purchase tickets by phone at (800) 745-3000 or online at BlueJackets.com and ticketmaster.com. Season tickets starting at $18 per game, as well as six-, 10- and 20-game packages for the 2009-10 season are also on sale. For information, call (800) NHL-COLS or visit BlueJackets.com.