· Rangers sign goaltender Valiquette
· Rangers sign defenseman Girardi
New York Rangers President and General Manager Glen Sather announced today that the club has signed restricted free agent defenseman Karel Rachunek.
Rachunek, 26, skated in 45 games with Yaroslavl Lokomotiv of the Russian Hockey League last season, collecting 11 goals and 20 assists for 31 points, along with 73 penalty minutes and a plus-14 rating. In 2004-05, Rachunek split the season with Yaroslavl and Znojmo of the Czech Extraleague, registering 11 goals and 14 assists for 25 points, along with 124 penalty minutes in 48 games.
The 6-2, 212-pound defenseman has appeared in 258 career NHL games with the Rangers and Ottawa Senators, registering 12 goals and 89 assists for 101 points, along with 149 penalty minutes. He has also skated in 20 career playoff contests with the Senators, tallying one goal and three assists, along with 14 penalty minutes.
In 2003-04, Rachunek skated in 72 games with the Rangers and Senators, registering two goals and 19 assists for 21 points, along with 33 penalty minutes. On March 9, 2004, he was acquired by the Rangers, along with Alexandre Giroux, in exchange for Greg de Vries and made his Rangers debut on March 12, 2004 at Tampa Bay. Prior to the trade to New York, he appeared in 60 games with Ottawa, recording one goal and 16 assists for 17 points, along with 29 penalty minutes.
During the 2001-02 season, Rachunek was selected to skate in the NHL YoungStars Game during the NHL All-Star Weekend on January 17, 2002. In his rookie campaign of 2000-01, he finished second among all NHL rookies with a plus-17 rating and was third with 30 assists.
A native of Zlin, Czech Republic, Rachunek was originally Ottawa's eighth choice, 229th overall, in the 1997 NHL Entry Draft.