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Avs re-sign potential free agents Clark, Skrastins

DENVER -- The Colorado Avalanche re-signed defensemen Brett Clark and Karlis Skrastins to multiyear contracts on Friday but
star Rob Blake remained without a contract on the eve of free
agency.

The Avs' top priorities entering the offseason were resigning
captain Joe Sakic and defenseman Blake. Sakic signed a one-year
deal last week and Colorado also traded left wing Alex Tanguay to
Calgary on draft day for defenseman Jordan Leopold and two draft
picks.

Forwards Dan Hinote and Jim Dowd also are unrestricted free
agents who haven't signed.

Clark, 29, posted career highs with nine goals and 27 assists in
80 games.

Skrastins has played in 433 consecutive games, the longest
active streak in the NHL and the second-longest by a defenseman in
hockey history -- 53 behind Tim Horton's record.

The 31-year-old native of Latvia had three goals and 11 assists,
his second best offensive season in the NHL. He blocked 207 shots,
the second-best total in the league. He joined former Avalanche
defenseman Sandis Ozolinsh on the Latvian Olympic team at this
year's Turin Games.

"Brett and Karlis had very strong seasons for this club last
year," general manager Francois Giguere said. "Their
dependability and individual skills were coveted by many teams. The
long-term commitment they've made will add stability and depth to
our blue line for the coming years."