Klesla signs four-year contract with Blue Jackets

Updated: April 18, 2006, 8:14 PM ET
Associated Press

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- The Columbus Blue Jackets signed defenseman Rostislav Klesla, the team's first draft pick, to a four-year contract Tuesday.

Defense
Columbus Blue Jackets

Profile
2006 SEASON STATISTICS
GM G A PTS +/- PIM
51 6.0 13.0 19.0 -5 75

Klesla has played in 253 games with the Blue Jackets and has 20 goals and 46 assists. The 24-year-old set career highs for goals (six) and assists (13) this season in 51 games. He also averaged a career-best 21:26 of ice time.

"We have very high expectations for our team moving forward and are thrilled that Rusty is going to be an integral part of our franchise," Blue Jackets president and general manager Doug MacLean said.

Klesla, a restricted free agent, was making just under $1 million a season. Financial terms of the new deal were not announced.

A native of Novy Jicin, Czech Republic, Klesla was taken with the fourth overall pick in the 2000 draft.


Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press