Hockey

Thrashers sign Stuart to 3-year deal

The Atlanta Thrashers have signed newly acquired defenceman Mark Stuart to a three-year deal worth an average of $1.7 million US per year.

The Atlanta Thrashers on Monday signed newly acquired defenceman Mark Stuart to a three-year deal.

Stuart was just acquired by the club 10 days ago from the Boston Bruins along with power forward Blake Wheeler in exchange for centre Rich Peverley and defenceman Boris Valabik.

First-year Atlanta coach Craig Ramsay knows Stuart well, having been an assistant coach with the Bruins in recent years.

"I think the biggest thing [Ramsay has] taught me is to just enjoy the game and have fun with it," Stuart told Hockey Night in Canada on Monday. "I'm kind of a guy who takes stuff a little too seriously sometimes, and he's just helped me settle down and that's definitely helped my game a lot."

The 26-year-old Stuart has played in 35 games this season and has totalled one goal and four assists. The Rochester, Minn.. native was drafted in 2003 at 21st overall by the Bruins and has a total of 13 goals and 27 assists in 287 career games.

A rugged, stay-at-home defenceman, he has amassed 294 career penalty minutes.

The club did not release financial detials but multiple reports indicate the deal is worth an average of $1.7 million US per year.

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