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Update: Chris Chelios signed by Thrashers, placed on waivers

According to Ben Wright of the Blueland Blog and Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Chris Chelios has officially been signed by the Atlanta Thrashers and immediately placed on waivers.

Chelios, 48, has been playing for the Thrashers’ AHL affiliate in Chicago this season, although he was not property of the Thrashers. He signs with the Thrashers as an unrestricted free agent. He appeared in 44 games for the Wolves this season with five goals and 16 assists. He was also a plus-35.

Chelios must clear waivers and may remain in Chicago.

What’s interesting about all this is the reports that Chelios signed as a UFA, despite supposedly signing with Chicago on a professional tryout contract (PTO) on February 19. Whatever the case, it will be interesting to see if another team does in fact claim Chelios. It’s doubtful, but the 48 year-old does lead the AHL in plus-minus this season.

Original post after the jump...

Update, 10:55 a.m. - RDS is now reporting that the Thrashers have signed Chelios. From the translated article:

The veteran defenseman Chris Chelios will sign an agreement Tuesday with the Atlanta Thrashers. His name will be placed on waivers, but the defender will remain with the Chicago Wolves in the AHL for now.

It appears the confusion may be over the original Chicago Wolves report that Chelios had signed a third PTO. According to AHL rules, a player can only sign two consecutive PTO before having to sign a Standard Player Contract, essentially a basic AHL contract.

Original post -

It’s amazing how one simple sentence can set off a semi-firestorm. Of sorts.

At the bottom of an Associated Press (posted on article reporting that Evgeny Artyukhin to Atlanta trade, there is one simple sentence that has folks a bit confused this morning.

Meanwhile, the Thrashers have signed Chris Chelios, who played with the Wolves.

Does this mean that the Atlanta Thrashers have signed a 48 year old defenseman, who is happily playing hockey in the moonlight of his career with the Chicago Wolves of the AHL? Are they seriously that hard up for help on the blue line?

I’m still sorting through the details on this one, but it seems as if the Thrashers signed Chelios to a basic AHL contract because of a PTO snafu.After doing some digging, it appears there may be a mixup of sorts. Ben Wright, team reporter from the Thashers, was caught a bit off guard.

Sportsnet is reporting that the Thrashers have signed Chris Chelios. Looking into it, but I’d expect him to stay in Chicago for now if true

Chelios signed with the Chicago Wolves this past fall on a Professional Tryout Contract (PTO), which is essentially a 25-game contract for at least league minimum. He signed another one when that expired and signed a third, as reported on the Wolves’ website, on February 19. While it’s certainly a possibility that the Thrashers picked up Chelios for depth purposes, this could be a case of the Sportsnet report mistaking the third PTO for an Atlanta contract.