New York Rangers President, General Manager and Head Coach Glen Sather announced today that the club has agreed to terms with unrestricted free agent left wing Chris Simon. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
"Chris is a player who has established himself as a physical presence over his career in the National Hockey League," said Sather. "He is a tremendous team player who we expect to make a great contribution to the overall success of our hockey club."
Simon, 31, appeared in 71 matches for the Washington Capitals and Chicago Blackhawks last season, registering 12 goals and eight assists for 20 points, along with 148 penalty minutes. He ranked first on Chicago with 148 penalty minutes. Simon tallied his 100th career NHL goal on January 26 at Montreal and skated in his 500th career NHL contest on January 30 at Boston. He was traded to the Blackhawks from Washington, along with Andrei Nikolishin, on November 1, in exchange for Michael Nylander, a 2003 third round draft choice and a conditional 2004 third round draft choice.
The 6-4, 236-pound left wing has spent his 11-year NHL career with the Blackhawks, Quebec Nordiques/Colorado Avalanche and Washington Capitals, registering 108 goals and 117 assists for 225 points, along with 1,346 penalty minutes in 527 matches. In 1999-2000, Simon established career-highs in several categories, including goals (29), assists (20), points (49), power play goals (seven) and shots (201). Leading the club in goals (29) and penalty minutes (146), along with power play goals (seven) and shots (201), he joined Joe Thornton as the only other NHL player to lead his team in goals and penalty minutes that season.
Simon has appeared in 51 career playoff contests, collecting five goals and four assists for nine points, along with 110 penalty minutes. He was a member of the Colorado Avalanche Stanley Cup championship club in 1996, where he registered one goal and two assists for three points, along with 11 penalty minutes in 12 games. Simon was also a member of the Washington Capitals team that captured the 1998 Eastern Conference championship.
The native of Wawa, Ontario was originally drafted by the Philadelphia Flyers in the second round, 25th overall, in the 1990 NHL Entry Draft. On July 21, 1992, Simon was traded to the Quebec Nordiques from Philadelphia, along with Philadelphia's first round choice in the 1994 NHL Entry Draft (Washington selected Nolan Baumgartner), to complete the transaction that sent Eric Lindros to Philadelphia (June 30, 1992). Simon was acquired by Washington from Colorado, along with Curtis Leschyshyn, in exchange for Keith Jones and Washington's first (Scott Parker) and fourth (Krys Barch) round choices in the 1998 NHL Entry Draft on November 2, 1996.