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Blackhawks sign Khabibulin to replace Emery

Published on NewsOK Modified: July 5, 2013 at 10:17 pm •  Published: July 5, 2013
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CHICAGO (AP) — Veteran goalie Nikolai Khabibulin is returning to the Chicago Blackhawks on a one-year deal, part of a busy Friday for the Stanley Cup champions that also included new contracts for defenseman Michal Rozsival and forward Michal Handzus.

Khabibulin, who played for Chicago for four seasons from 2005-09, replaces backup Ray Emery, who left the Blackhawks for a $1.65 million, one-year deal with the Philadelphia Flyers. Viktor Stalberg also left, agreeing to a $12 million, four-year deal from the Nashville Predators.

Rozsival and Handzus each played a role in Chicago's second championship in four seasons. Rozsival agreed to a two-year contract, and Handzus got a one-year deal.

Emery returns to Philly after teaming with Corey Crawford to win the William B. Jennings Trophy awarded to the team with the lowest goals-against average.

Emery, who played for the Flyers in the 2009-10 season, went 17-1 with a 1.94 GAA last season. He spent two years in Chicago and will now compete for the Philadelphia starting job with Steve Mason.

Khabibulin spent the past four seasons with Edmonton. He went 4-6-1 this past season with a shutout and a .908 save percentage in 12 appearances.

"I think he is able to be the tandem with Corey that's worked so well over the past couple of years," Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman said. "It was very appealing for both sides. We have a lot of familiarity with Nik."

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