SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) -Claude Lemieux signed a contract with the San Jose Sharks' AHL affiliate in Worcester on Tuesday, officially resuming his pro hockey career after a five-year absence.
Lemieux, who won four Stanley Cup championships with three NHL teams, must pass through AHL waivers before he can suit up for the Worcester Sharks. The 43-year-old Lemieux has said he wants to make a comeback to the NHL, where he last played for Dallas in 2003.
"Claude called and inquired about resuming his hockey career, and we have given him an opportunity to pursue it with Worcester," said Wayne Thomas, the Worcester Sharks' general manager and San Jose's assistant GM. "He is here to help this team win games."
Lemieux played parts of 20 seasons in the NHL, winning titles with Montreal (1986), New Jersey (1995 and 2000) and Colorado (1996). He won the Conn Smythe Trophy as the playoff MVP in 1995, and his 80 postseason goals rank ninth in league history.
Lemieux played two games with the China Sharks, San Jose's affiliate in Shanghai, earlier this year while he contemplated a comeback.
"I would like to thank Wayne Thomas and the Worcester Sharks for the opportunity to show I can still play this game at a high level," Lemieux said. "I look forward to meeting my new teammates and helping Worcester on the ice."