The Blackhawks signed free agent D Boris Mironov, who missed the first 16 games of the season while negotiating a new three-year contract.

Financial terms weren't disclosed by the team, though the Chicago Tribune said the deal is worth close to $9.6 million.

Mironov, 27, had nine assists in 12 games for the Blackhawks last season after joining Chicago on March 20 in a seven-player trade with the Oilers. He had 11 goals, 29 assists and 104 penalty minutes in 63 games with the Oilers.

The 6-foot-3, 223-pound Mironov has 49 goals, 149 assists and 567 penalty minutes in 397 career NHL games with Chicago, Edmonton and Winnipeg. He originally was selected by Winnipeg with the 27th overall pick in the 1992 NHL draft.

Mironov likely will be able to rejoin the Blackhawks for today's game against his former team, the Oilers.

BURE RETURNS: Panthers Pavel Bure returned to the lineup last night after missing three games because of a broken finger and scored a short-handed goal in Florida's 3-1 win over the Sabres. The Panthers are 10-5-4 with Bure in the lineup dating from last season and 5-2-2 with him this season.