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C Jeff Halpern coming to New York

Jeff Woywitka #6 of the New York Rangers

Jeff Woywitka #6 of the New York Rangers and Jeff Halpern #15 of the Washington Capitals battle for the puck against the boards during the first period at Verizon Center. (Dec. 28, 2011) Credit: Getty Images

Rangers have yet to confirm but overnight reports, including from RDS, say free agent C Jeff Halpern, 36, has agreed to a one year deal worth $700,000.  Halpern, a veteran pivot who wins faceoffs with regularity, presumably was brought in to replace John Mitchell, who left for Colorado, on the fourth line.

He won 58.3 percent of his draws for the Caps last season, can kill penalties and had four goals and 16 points in 69 games.

Halpern, who has 146 goals and 212 assists in 861 regular-season games with the Caps, Lightning, Stars, Kings and Canadiens, is 6 foot, 203 pounds. He captained the Caps in 2005 and is yet another American on the roster, born in Potomac, Md. Halpern played on the U.S. team in the IIHF World Championships, coached by John Tortorella, in 2008.

He is the third forward, all 30 or over and with significant NHL experience to sign this month, including Arron Asham and Taylor Pyatt.  Besides Mitchell, Ruslan Fedotenko left for Philadelphia and Brandon Prust accepted a $10 million, four-year contract offer from Montreal.

Here's a piece from the Washington Times website:

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