Coyotes sign Roenick to one-year contract

Updated: July 5, 2006, 12:27 AM ET
ESPN.com news services

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Jeremy Roenick is coming back to the Phoenix Coyotes.

Jeremy Roenick
Roenick

The team said Tuesday it had signed the free-agent center to a incentive-laden $1.2 million, one-year contract, bringing the nine-time All-Star back to Phoenix. Roenick, 36, was an original member of the Coyotes, playing with the club for five years through the 2000-01 season.

"I'm thrilled to be returning home to play for the Coyotes," Roenick said on the Coyotes' Web site. "I have a lot of great memories from my five years in the desert and I'm looking forward to having a great season and help lead our team to the playoffs.

"I'm hungry, I'm focused and I can't wait for the season to begin," he said.

Roenick scored 100 points or more in his five seasons with Phoenix but has seen his play steadily decline in recent years. Last season he was limited by injuries and had just nine goals and 13 assists in 58 games for the Los Angeles Kings.

"We're very pleased to bring Jeremy back to the Coyotes," said Coyotes managing partner and coach Wayne Gretzky. "J.R. is an elite player who plays with passion every night.

"He'll be a valuable addition to our team and to the community. We are proud to have him and his family back," Gretzky said.

Rugged and skillful, Roenick recorded two seasons of 50-plus goals and is the only player in NHL history to lead his team in goals, assists, points and penalty minutes in two different seasons.

The Boston native has 484 goals and 1,142 assists in 17 NHL seasons, with Chicago and Philadelphia in addition to the Kings and Coyotes.

Roenick was also a member of the U.S. silver medal-winning team at the 2002 Winter Olympics.

Information from The Associated Press and Reuters was used in this report.