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Flyers

Flyers Re-Sign Goalie Michael Leighton

(credit: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

(credit: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

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PHILADELPHIA (AP) — The Flyers re-signed free-agent goaltender Michael Leighton on Sunday, the first day of NHL free agency.

Leighton, 31, spent most of last season in the AHL, but could be a backup to Flyers starter Ilya Bryzgalov this season. Philadelphia’s No. 2 last season, Sergei Bobrovsky, was dealt to Columbus during the NHL draft last month.

Originally acquired by the Flyers in December 2009, Leighton has spent part of the last three seasons with Philadelphia. He also appeared in four games for the Flyers during the 2006-07 season. In 32 career regular-season games for Philadelphia, Leighton is 19-7-2 with a 2.68 goals-against average.

He is most remembered, however, for his run in the 2010 Stanley Cup playoffs, where he set a new franchise record for shutouts in a playoff series (3), and went 8-3 with a .916 save percentage as the Flyers, seeded just No. 7, won the Eastern Conference.

“I’m very happy to be back in Philly,” said Leighton, who did not talk with any other teams. “This is where I want to be and I’m excited about the team we have this year. I look forward to the opportunity.”

In 104 NHL games with Chicago, Nashville, Carolina, and Philadelphia, Leighton has a career record of 35-40-10-4 with a 2.95 goals-against, and a .902 save percentage.

“To be a backup, I’ve done it before,” Leighton said, “and I just have to show the team I can continue to do it.

“This is a big step for me.”

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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