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Blueshirts sign Straka to contract extension

by Staff Writer / New York Rangers

New York Rangers President and General Manager Glen Sather announced today that the club has signed forward Martin Straka to a contract extension.

Straka, 34, has skated in 47 games with the Rangers this season, registering 24 goals and 31 assists for 55 points, along with a plus-14 rating and 22 penalty minutes. He currently ranks among the league leaders in several offensive categories including goals (T-8th), assists (T-20th), points (11th) and plus/minus (T-25th). He is also tied for sixth in the NHL with five game-winning goals and tied for 10th in the league with 24 power play points.

On January 4 vs. Philadelphia, Straka tallied three goals for his sixth career hat trick and reached the 20-goal plateau for the sixth time in his career. In addition, Straka posted a career-high 11-game point scoring streak from November 15 to December 12, recording seven goals and 12 assists over the span. His 11-game streak is tied for the second longest in the NHL this season.

A veteran of 14 NHL seasons with the Pittsburgh Penguins, Ottawa Senators, New York Islanders, Florida Panthers, Los Angeles Kings and Rangers, the two-time 30-goal scorer has skated in 859 career NHL games, registering 238 goals and 423 assists for 661 points, along with 336 penalty minutes.

In 2005-06, Straka appeared in 82 games with the Rangers, collecting 22 goals and 54 assists for 76 points, along with 42 penalty minutes. His 54 assists (T-20th in the NHL) and 76 points (T-35th in the NHL) ranked third on the club, while his 29 power play assists led the team and tied for 19th in the league. As a member of the Penguins, he recorded 442 points (165 goals and 277 assists) in 560 contests.

His best professional season came in 2000-01 with the Penguins, when he played in all 82 games and charted career-highs in assists (68) and points (95). In 1998-99, Straka tallied a career-high 35 goals and represented the Penguins at the 1999 NHL All-Star Game.

The 5-9, 180-pounder has also appeared in 86 career playoff contests with the Penguins, Panthers and Rangers, registering 21 goals and 29 assists for 50 points, along with 34 penalty minutes. Straka was a key member of Pittsburgh's team that went to the Eastern Conference Semifinals in 2001, appearing in 18 post-season contests and registering five goals and eight assists for 13 points.

During the 1996 Stanley Cup Playoffs, Straka skated in 13 of Florida's 22 playoff games en route to the Stanley Cup Finals, tallying two goals in the Eastern Conference Finals versus Pittsburgh.
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