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Ben Hutton signs two-year contract with Canucks

Defenseman gets deal worth $2.8 million annually

NHL.com @NHLdotcom

Defenseman Ben Hutton signed a two-year, $5.6 million contract with the Vancouver Canucks on Thursday.

"Ben is developing into one of our young, emerging core players and is an important part of our future," general manager Jim Benning told the Canucks website. "We're excited to see him further elevate his game and help this team compete for years to come."

Hutton, 23, has one year remaining on his entry-level contract. The new contract is has an average annual value of $2.8 million. Hutton was due to become a restricted free agent after this season.

"It's a dream come true to play in this league and to be part of this team," Hutton said. "The Canucks wanting me for another two years is great."

The defenseman had a goal and 24 assists as a rookie in 2015-16. He has two goals and two assists in 20 games this season.

"It's exciting news," coach Willie Desjardins said. "Ben has been a nice surprise since he got here. He's a great young player and he's playing real well."

The Canucks selected Hutton in the fifth round (No. 147) of the 2012 NHL Draft.

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