The Detroit Red Wings locked up goaltender Jimmy Howard through 2018-19 to a $31.8 million deal.
Howard made no secret of wanting to stay longer with his present ballclub.
"It's an exciting time for myself and my family and we're excited to be here for six more years," said Howard.
"To be able to be drafted by the Wings when I was 18 and still be here, part of the organization at the age of 29, was pretty special," he added.
Red Wings general manager Ken Holland said that signing Howard provides stability to the organization as they have a player in a very important position who wants to be with the team, has grown up through the system, and has gotten better every year.
"We obviously gave some term. In order to get, you gotta give. This deal for us and for Jimmy, gives him security, gives us security, stability," Holland said.
"He's our best player every night," added defenseman Jakub Kindl. "He's the reason we're still in the running. He's our best player by far."
Niklas Kronwall won't dispute that.
"He's been so stellar for us, the backbone of our team," Kronwall said. "He's been nothing but great for us all year and given us a chance to win every night. You can't say enough good things about him.
Howard is 17-12-6 with a 2.31 goals-against average and a .920 save percentage with three shutouts in 36 games this season.
Last season, he had a GAA of 2.12 and a save percentage of .920. He was in the running for the Vezina trophy until a
late-season injury derailed any hopes of capturing that title.
He has played in 228 regular-season games with the Red Wings and has a 127-66-25 record with a 2.39 GAA, a .917 save percentage and 14 shutouts.
In three full seasons, Howard has racked up at least 35 wins and a save percentage of at least .908 each season.
He is 13-15 in the playoffs with a 2.63 GAA and a .915 save percentage with one shutout.
Howard's appearance in 36 of 42 games this season ranks seventh among NHL goalies in minutes played this season.
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