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Thrashers Ink Nik Antropov to Four-Year Deal

Thursday, Jul. 2nd, 2009

The Atlanta Thrashers have signed unrestricted free agent forward Nik Antropov to a multiple-year contract, according to Executive Vice President and General Manager Don Waddell.

Antropov (an-TROH-pahv), 29, has recorded 304 points (132 goals, 172 assists) in 527 games over nine NHL seasons with Toronto and the N.Y. Rangers, including 29 power play goals, 24 game-winning goals and a plus-53 rating. In the last two seasons, he has totaled 115 points (54 goals, 61 assists) in 153 games, including 20 power play goals and nine game-winning goals. He has also appeared in 35 playoff games over five playoff seasons with Toronto and New York, recording eight points (four goals, four assists).

“Nik Antropov is a proven scorer in this league and a top-line forward with tremendous size, skill and experience,” said Waddell. “Along with our addition of Pavel Kubina, we are excited to have greatly upgraded both the offense and defense of our club as we head into next season.”

The 6-6, 230-pound right wing appeared in 81 games last season with the Maple Leafs and Rangers, recording 59 points (28 goals, 31 assists), setting career highs in each category. He finished the season ranked first on the Rangers in goals and points and was fourth in assists. After tallying 46 points (21 goals, 25 assists) in 63 games for Toronto, he was acquired by the Rangers in a trade-deadline deal on March 4, where he recorded 13 points (seven goals, six assists) in 18 games. In seven playoff games with the Rangers in 2009, he tallied three points (two goals, one assist).

During the 2007-08 season, Antropov recorded 56 points (26 goals, 30 assists) in 72 games with the Maple Leafs. He led the team in power play goals (12), a career high, and game-winning goals (5). He also ranked second on the team in goals, points and plus/minus rating (plus-10) while finishing fourth on the team in assists.

Antropov also appeared in 36 games with St. John’s of the American Hockey League over parts of two seasons (1999-00 and 2001-02), recording 35 points (11 goals, 24 assists). In two seasons in the Russian SuperLeague (1998-99 and 2004-05) with Dynamo, Ak-Bars Kazan and Yaroslavl, he tallied 38 points (11 goals, 27 assists) in 66 games.

A native of Ust-Kamenogorsk, Kazakhstan, Antropov was selected by Toronto in the first round, 10th overall, of the 1998 NHL Entry Draft. He represented Kazakhstan in the 2006 Winter Olympic Games, where he recorded one goal in five games, and the 1997, 1998 and 1999 World Junior Championships.

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