By Michael Caples -
Pavel Datsyuk is staying in Hockeytown.
The Red Wings’ all-star forward announced via his personal Facebook and Twitter today that he has signed a three-year extension with Detroit.
With the deal, the 34-year-old will remain with the Red Wings through the 2016-17 season.
UPDATE: The Red Wings confirmed the news via their social media accounts at 11:23 a.m.
Datsyuk, the Red Wings’ sixth-round pick (171st overall), has been one of the top players in the world since entering the NHL in 2001. The native of Sverdlovsk, Russia, has scored 255 goals and 512 assists for 767 points in 779 NHL games – all with the Red Wings.
Last Friday, Datsyuk told NHL.com that he has plenty of faith in the Red Wings.
“We have a younger team now. But we’re still a good team,” Datsyuk said. “When I came 11 years ago, there were a lot of veteran guys. Now the team is younger, younger, younger. But I’m older, older, older.”
Datsyuk will complete the last year of his seven-year, $49-million deal in 2013-14. With his current deal, he is a $6,700,000 cap hit for the Red Wings.
Reports in May suggested that he would be returning to his native Russia to conclude his professional career in the KHL.
“We’re obviously thrilled to extend the contract of the best two-way player in the National Hockey League,” said Red Wings GM Ken Holland in a press release issued by the team. “This deal ensures that Pavel will be in Detroit for the next four years. His accomplishments over the past 11 seasons demonstrate what a truly dynamic player he is. His work ethic is second to none. We feel we have a tremendous leadership group moving forward in Zetterberg, Datsyuk and Kronwall.”
MLive’s Ansar Khan is reporting that Datsyuk’s new deal is for $23 million, with yearly hits of $10 million, $7.5 million, then $5.5 million.
Datsyuk led the Red Wings in scoring in the lock-out shortened 2012-13 season, recording 49 points in 47 games. Last season, he trailed now-captain Henrik Zetterberg by two points, yet he only played in 70 games, as compared to Zetterberg’s full 82. Datsyuk’s career-best points total for a single season is 97, which he recorded in back-to-back seasons from 2007-09.