Sterling, Craig sign with Penguins

The Pittsburgh Penguins, parent club of the AHL’s Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins, have signed forwards Brett Sterling and Ryan Craig to one-year, two-way contracts, it was announced on Saturday by executive vice president and general manager Ray Shero.

Sterling, who was originally drafted by Atlanta in the fifth round of the 2003 NHL Entry Draft, has played the majority of his career with Atlanta’s AHL affiliate, the Chicago Wolves. In four seasons with Chicago, Sterling scored 144 goals, 119 assists and 263 points in 254 games. He chipped in 14 goals and 30 points in 40 playoff contests for the Wolves.

Sterling tallied 55 goals and 97 points in his first season with Chicago in 2006-07. His 55 goals led the AHL, and he was awarded the Willie Marshall Award (goal-scoring champion) and Dudley “Red” Garret Memorial Trophy as the top AHL rookie. Sterling was named to the All-Rookie Team and an AHL First-Team All Star, as well as winning the All-Star Game MVP, in 2007.

The Los Angeles native was a member of the Wolves’ 2008 Calder Cup championship team. Sterling, 26, has also played in 19 career NHL games with the Atlanta Thrashers, recording two goals and four points.

Craig, 28, has played the last seven seasons with the Tampa Bay organization after the Lightning selected him in the eighth round (255th overall) of the 2002 NHL Entry Draft. In 184 career NHL games, Craig has totaled 32 goals, 31 assists and 63 points. He’s also appeared in 11 postseason contests with Tampa Bay.

The 6-foot-2, 220-pound forward spent the majority of the 2009-10 season with Tampa Bay’s AHL affiliate in Norfolk. In 73 games for the Admirals, Craig recorded 45 points on 23 goals and 22 assists.

The Abbotsford, B.C., native has played 244 AHL games with Norfolk, Springfield and Hershey, tallying 67 goals and 56 assists for 123 points.