OTTAWA - Ottawa Senators general manager John Muckler today announced the signing of right-winger Jeff Heerema to a one-year deal.
Heerema, 26, played the entire 2005-06 season for Ottawa's American Hockey League (AHL) affiliate, the Binghamton Senators. In 77 games, Heerema was second with the B-Sens in assists (47) and goals (27), while finishing third in overall points (74). Season highlights for Heerema included two four-point games and a subsequent CCM Vector/AHL player of the week award on April 10. The Thunder Bay, Ont., native originally signed with Ottawa as a free agent on August 26, 2005.
In 2004-05, Heerema signed as a free agent with Vancouver, playing for their AHL affiliate, the Manitoba Moose. Playing in all 80 regular-season games for the Moose, he finished fifth in team scoring with 14 goals and 30 assists. He stood third in team scoring during the playoffs with 10 points (4-6) in 14 games.
The 2003-04 season saw Heerema juggled between three NHL organizations. He started at the Carolina Hurricanes training camp, but was claimed off waivers by the New York Rangers on Sept. 30. He was then claimed by the St. Louis Blues during the NHL Waiver Draft on Oct. 3, and started the regular season with the Blues. After recording three points (1-2) with St. Louis in 22 games, he was assigned to the Worcester Ice Cats on a conditioning stint for one game. He was again claimed off waivers by the Rangers and assigned to the Hartford Wolf Pack on Jan. 10. In 41 games with Hartford to wrap up the season, he registered 27 points (12-15).
Heerema, Carolina's first-round pick (11th overall) in 1998 NHL Entry Draft, played three seasons with the Ontario Hockey League's Sarnia Sting. In his last season in 1999-2000, he led the Sting in scoring with 36 goals and 41 assists for 77 points in 67 games.
JEFF HEEREMA, Right wing - Shoots right - 6'2", 212 lbs.
Born: Jan. 17, 1980 (Thunder Bay, Ont.) - Drafted: Carolina's first-round choice (11th overall) in 1998
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