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Frogren Contract Hits Snag

by Staff Writer / Toronto Maple Leafs

TORONTO (CP with files from Toronto Star) -- The Toronto Maple Leafs had hoped to announce the signing of Swedish defenceman Jonas Frogren on Wednesday but the contract was rejected by the NHL's head office.

``We are working with the NHL Players' Association to resolve the matter,'' said Don Meehan of Newport Sports, Frogren's agent. ``We remain hopeful it will get resolved.''

The league determined Frogren, 28, must be signed to an entry-level contract as a first-year NHL player despite his pro experience in Europe. The Leafs had signed Frogren to a standard contract.

Frogren, six-foot-one and 200 pounds, is a stay-at-home defenceman who played for Farjestad of the Swedish Elite League last season.

``He played really well at the world championships,'' Leafs GM Cliff Fletcher told The Canadian Press on Wednesday. ``He's a physical, defensive defenceman. He can play in our top six next season.''

Fletcher went on to tell the Toronto Star: "I'm hopeful this will be resolved and he'll be in camp by September."

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