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WINGS SIGN HUSSEY AND SMITH

Center and Defenseman Combined for 20 NHL Games Last Season

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.
– The Detroit Red Wings, NHL affiliate of the Grand Rapids Griffins, on Thursday announced the signings of center Matt Hussey and defenseman Dan Smith to one-year contracts.

Hussey, 27, enjoyed a breakout season with the AHL’s Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins in 2005-06, posting career highs with 21 goals and a team-leading 30 assists and 51 points. He also paced the Penguins with seven game-winning goals, helping them earn the East Division championship and the third-best record in the AHL at 51-18-5-6 (113 points). Hussey’s hot start – he totaled 19 points (9-10—19) in his first 17 games before being recalled by the Pittsburgh Penguins – propelled Wilkes-Barre to an incredible 20-0-2-1 record out of the gate.

Pittsburgh’s 10th choice in the 1998 Entry Draft, Hussey appeared in 13 contests with the parent Pens last season, contributing an assist. He scored a goal during his NHL debut on March 16, 2004 versus Washington and has totaled four points (2-2—4) in 16 career games with Pittsburgh.

Smith, 29, has logged 561 games during a pro career that dates to the end of 1996-97, when he joined the Hershey Bears out of junior and promptly won a Calder Cup championship.

The 1995 draft pick spent parts of five seasons in the Colorado Avalanche organization, registering 15 NHL games from 1998-2000. After signing with the Edmonton Oilers as a free agent on August 21, 2003, Smith played parts of three seasons with the franchise’s AHL affiliates before returning to the NHL with a seven-game stint last season. He spent the majority of the 2005-06 campaign with the Hamilton Bulldogs, finishing with 16 assists in 69 outings.


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