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No surprise, Artyukhin is signed

Since we've been writing about him consistently since the new ownership group came along, it should be no surprise Evgeny Artyukhin is finally, signed, sealed and delivered. The key, apparently, was Artyukhin sending the team his expired contract from Russia's Central Army team. Because of a lack of a transfer agreement with Russia, the NHL is requiring newly signed Russian players to prove they are not under contract in their homeland.

Arty The signing ends a two-year negotiation to get the 6-foot-5, 254-pound wing back in a Lightning uniform.

Here is some of the team announcement:

"We are extremely happy to have Arty back in the fold after playing in Russia the previous two seasons," vice president of hockey operations Brian Lawton said. "He brings a real unmistakable presence to the ice as soon as he comes over the boards and having his size and speed, along with his willingness to use them physically, will make us a tougher team to play against each night."

Drafted by Tampa Bay in the third round, 94th overall, at the 2001 NHL Entry Draft, the right wing played 72 games for the Lightning during the 2005-06 season and recorded four goals, 17 points and 90 penalty minutes. The fan favorite made his NHL debut on October 20, 2005 at Atlanta and scored his first goal November 5, 2005 at Toronto.

Before his recall to Tampa Bay, Artyukhin played four games with Springfield of the American Hockey League, posting two goals and one assist with four penalty minutes.

A native of Moscow, Russia, the 25-year-old forward spent the past two seasons in the Russian Super League, now the Continental League. Artyukhin played 44 games with Yaroslavl in 2006-07, where he had five goals and eight assists with 183 penalty minutes.

Artyukhin split the 2007-08 season between Avangard Omsk and CSKA Moscow. He played 19 games with Avangard Omsk, scoring three goals and recording five points with 40 penalty minutes. Artyukhin played 23 games with CSKA Moscow, recording three goals and nine points with a plus-3 rating and 99 penalty minutes. He scored four goals in six playoff games with Moscow.

Artyukhin played 102 career games in the AHL with Springfield and Hershey, recording 14 goals and 37 points with 257 penalty minutes. He spent the 2002-03 season with Moncton of the QMJHL, playing 53 games and posting 14 goals, 40 points and 204 penalty minutes.

[Dirk Shadd, Times files]

[Last modified: Sunday, August 16, 2009 4:38pm]


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