Blackhawks sign Cullen to one-year contract

The Chicago Blackhawks, parent club of the AHL’s Rockford IceHogs, have signed center Mark Cullen to a one-year contact.

Last season, the Virginia, Minn., native ranked fifth on the American Hockey League’s Manitoba Moose with 25 assists and sixth with 39 points in 56 regular-season contests. He helped Manitoba reach the Calder Cup Finals, notching nine assists and 13 points in 20 postseason tilts.

Cullen has registered 286 points (103 goals, 183 assists) and 217 penalty minutes in 358 career AHL regular-season games with Houston (2002-05), Norfolk (2005-06), Philadelphia (2006-07), Grand Rapids (2007-08) and Manitoba (2008-09). Cullen has also collected 29 points (10g, 19a) in 46 career AHL postseason matchups, which includes helping Houston capture the Calder Cup in 2003 during his rookie campaign.

Cullen registered National Hockey League career highs in games played (29), goals (7), assists (9) and points (16) in 29 games with the Blackhawks in 2005-06. He also appeared in three games with the Philadelphia Flyers in 2006-07, his last NHL action.

Cullen was the recipient of the AHL’s Fred T. Hunt Memorial Award in 2006, which is given out annually to the player best exemplifying sportsmanship, determination, and dedication to hockey. Prior to turning pro, he skated for four seasons at Colorado College (WCHA) from 1998 to 2002, tallying 167 points (53g, 114a) and 84 penalty minutes in 153 outings.