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Lightning Re-Sign Rob Zamuner

March 13, 1998

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) _ Left wing Rob Zamuner, who was due to become a restricted free agent in the off-season, re-signed with the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday. Terms were not disclosed.

Zamuner, one of the top defensive forwards in the NHL and a member of the Canadian Olympic team, has a team-leading 14 goals in 64 games for Tampa Bay this season.

``We said from the beginning it was our intention to keep Rob Zamuner, and we have done that,″ said general manager Phil Esposito. ``Rob obviously is a key player for this franchise and has been since Day 1, and I’ve always admired Rob’s work ethic on the ice.″

The Lightning wanted to sign or trade Zamuner before the season ended rather than risk losing him through restricted free agency. Last year, center Chris Gratton got a five-year, $16.5 million contract _ including a $9 million signing bonus _ from the Philadelphia Flyers as a restricted free agent. The cash-strapped Lightning elected not to match and eventually received forward Mikael Renberg and defenseman Karl Dykhuis as compensation.

The Lightning originally signed Zamuner as a free agent in 1992. He has 76 goals and 104 assists in 404 games for Tampa Bay over the last six seasons.

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