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Vancouver Canucks sign defenceman Mark Friedman to 1-year deal

Management says spare defenceman expected to compete for a regular spot this year
Vancouver Canucks goaltender Thatcher Demko, right, clears the puck to defenceman Mark Friedman after stopping a shot during NHL hockey action against the Colorado Avalanche, Wednesday, Nov. 22, 2023, in Denver. The Canucks have signed Friedman to a one-year contract worth US$775,000, the NHL club announced Wednesday.THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/David Zalubowski

The Vancouver Canucks have signed defenceman Mark Friedman to a one-year contract worth US$775,000, the NHL club announced Wednesday.

The 28-year-old from Toronto had an assist, 21 penalty minutes and a plus-4 rating over 23 games with the Canucks last season.

He added a goal and three assists in four games with the American Hockey League’s Abbotsford Canucks.

The five-foot-11, 185-pound defenceman has 13 points (four goals, nine assists) and 70 penalty minutes over 88 career NHL games with Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and Vancouver.

He has one assist in six playoff appearances with the Penguins.

Friedman was selected by Philadelphia in the third round, 86th overall, of the 2014 NHL draft.

“Mark’s addition to our group last year gave us some much-needed depth and he is someone we can count on if plugged into our lineup,” Canucks general manager Patrik Allvin said in a statement. “He is a team-first player and is always ready to step in if called upon.

“We expect him to come into camp and compete hard for a regular spot this season.”