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March 16, 2011 E-MAIL PRINT Bookmark and Share

Ness Signs with Islanders

CHN Staff Report

MINNEAPOLIS — Minnesota defenseman Aaron Ness made it official today, signing a three-year entry-level deal with the New York Islanders.

Ness will report to the Islanders’ American Hockey League affiliate, the Bridgeport Sound Tigers, and play out the remainder of the 2010-11 season on an Amateur Tryout Contract (ATO). The entry-level contract will begin in 2011-12 season.

“Aaron made tremendous strides this year physically and in the defensive part of his game," Minnesota coach Don Lucia said. "He was a terrific leader and you could count on him to be the hardest worker in practice and he competed hard in every game. At 20, he has a bright future ahead of him. We will miss Aaron, but appreciate all he did for Gopher hockey.”

Ness, 20, was drafted by the Islanders in the second round (40th overall) of the 2008 NHL Entry Draft. After putting up stellar numbers as a high schooler, he was able to translate that to the college game.

The 5-foot-10, 177-pound defenseman appeared in 35 games this season with the Golden Gophers, recording 14 points (two goals, 12 assists) and 41 penalty minutes. In 111 total games at Minnesota, he had six goals and 43 points.

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