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Lightning sign Brown, Paquette to two-year contracts

Forwards would have become restricted free agents July 1 @NHLdotcom

The Tampa Bay Lightning signed forwards Cedric Paquette and J.T. Brown each to a two-year contract Friday.

Each could have become a restricted free agent July 1. 

Brown had eight goals and 22 points in 2015-16, his third full NHL season, and was tied with defenseman Anton Stralman for third on the Lightning with a plus-16 rating. He had two assists in nine Stanley Cup Playoff games.

The 25-year-old has played in 198 NHL games, all with the Lightning, and has 15 goals and 51 points. He has one goal and six points in 37 Stanley Cup Playoff games. The Lightning signed Brown as an undrafted free agent March 28, 2012 after two seasons at the University of Minnesota Duluth.

Brown's contract has an average annual value of $1.25 million, the Tampa Bay Times reported.

Paquette, 22, had six goals and 11 points in 56 regular-season games for the Lightning, and had one assist in 17 playoff games. He has 18 goals and 31 points in 122 NHL regular-season games, and three goals and six points in 45 playoff games, all with the Lightning.

Tampa Bay selected Paquette in the fourth round (No. 101) of the 2012 NHL Draft.

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