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Chelios & Schneider return, Franzen joins from Sweden

by Staff Writer / Detroit Red Wings
DETROIT - General Manager Ken Holland today announced that the Detroit Red Wings have re-signed defensemen Chris Chelios (one year) and Mathieu Schneider (two years), and forward Johan Franzen (one-year entry level). In keeping with club policy, additional terms of the contracts are not available.

Chelios returns for his 22nd season in the National Hockey League and seventh with the Red Wings. The three-time Norris Trophy-winner (1989, '93 and '96) ranks 24th among active players in points with 914 (81st all-time).

"Chris brings a great deal of experience and passion to the rink every day," said Holland. "He's been a great Red Wing, he's in excellent shape, and no matter what his age, you know he can play at a very high level."

Schneider returns for his 17th NHL season and third in Detroit. In his one full season with the Wings, Schneider played a career-high 78 games and led Detroit's defensive corps with 14 goals and 32 assists for 46 points and a plus-22.

"With Mathieu and Chris, I feel very good about our defense for this season. Mathieu had a great year for us in 03-04 and we tried to sign him last summer. We're happy to have him back in a Red Wings jersey."

Franzen, 25, was Detroit's third-round selection (97th overall) in the 2004 NHL Entry Draft. Franzen (6-2, 210) comes to Detroit from Linkoping of the Swedish Elite league. He had a breakout season in 2003-04 when he tallied 30 points and led the league with a plus-24. He saw less ice time in 2004-05 with the addition of NHL veterans to the lineup and recorded seven goals and seven assists for 14 points in 43 games. Franzen was a member of the Swedish National Team that finished fourth in the 2005 World Championship

"We drafted Johan last summer in the third round and our scouts feel he is ready to play in the NHL," said Holland. "He established himself in the Swedish Elite League and their national program and we felt it was time to bring him over."
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