The Anaheim Ducks today re-signed center Saku Koivu to a two-year contract and signed defenseman Toni Lydman to a three-year deal.
Koivu was signed for two years, $5 million dollars, per Helene Elliott of the Los Angeles Times. Murray said the deal came close to not happening:
Last night, I had thought I lost Saku for sure. I just thought it didn’t sound right. They were going to look at some other numbers and had every right to. That didn’t bother me. I just didn’t think it was going to happen with the lack of centermen out there. I don’t think it hurt (signing Lydman). I’ve been very straight with Saku about my plans and intentions for the hockey team. We’ve had some really good talks over the last month and a half.
Lydman, a defenseman with nine years experience in the NHL, played in Buffalo last season. His contract was for three years, $9 million, per Elliott. Ducks Vice President / General Manager Bob Murray explained the deal in a press conference Thursday:
Toni Lydman is a third or fourth defenseman, who eats up minutes and does everything well. He plays power play, penalty killing and is a real solid two-way defenseman, which we needed desperately. He is a good player and a good citizen.
Both Koivu and Lydman are natives of Finland, as is Teemu Selanne, who turns 40 on Saturday and has been with the Ducks for the past five seasons. Asked if Koivu's signing will help Selanne return, Murray responded:
I don’t know yet. I still think Teemu is thinking. Obviously, they have the same agent. We’ll see what the next couple of days bring.