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Veteran D Franson lands tryout contract with Blackhawks

(Photo by Rocky W. Widner/NHL/Getty Images)

(TSX / STATS) -- The Chicago Blackhawks and veteran NHL defenseman Cody Franson agreed to a professional tryout contract, multiple media outlets reported.

Franson, 30, played 68 games with the Buffalo Sabres last season, posting three goals and 16 assists. The nine-year veteran has also played for Nashville, Toronto and Buffalo. Franson played well for the Maple Leafs, including 33- and 32-point seasons.

The right-handed shooter has 42 goals and 163 assists in 527 NHL games.

The Hawks, who traded Niklas Hjalmarsson and Trevor van Riemsdyk, and lost Brian Campbell to retirement and Johnny Oduya to free agency, are desperate for help on the blue line. Franson's chief competition on the right side of the third-pairing is expected to come from Czech import Jan Rutta and minor-leaguers Ville Pokka and Erik Gustafsson.

Sources said Franson rejected actual contract offers for the tryout opportunity with Chicago, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.

Updated September 7, 2017

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