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Blackhawks give D Brent Seabrook 5-year extension

NHL.com @NHL

CHICAGO (AP) - Veteran defenseman Brent Seabrook agreed to a five-year, $29 million contract extension with the Chicago Blackhawks on Sunday.

The 25-year-old Seabrook has played 452 regular-season games over parts of six seasons with the Blackhawks, who selected him with the 14th pick in the 2003 draft.

General manager Stan Bowman said the two sides had been working on the extension since October and had reached a point where it was time to complete it or set aside.

"He's been kind of a fixture on our defense. He came up as a 20-year-old kid," Bowman said. "I'm not sure he's reached his potential yet. His best years, he's coming right into them right now and that factored into it. He's still only 25 years old. Looking at defensemen in particular, they hit their stride between 25 and 30 and that's what this contract covers."

Seabrook made his debut with Chicago in 2005. He has 34 career goals and 143 assists and has led the Blackhawks in hits the last four seasons. Seabrook also played for the gold medal-winning Canadian Olympic team in Vancouver last year.

Pairing with fellow blue liner Duncan Keith, Seabrook helped Chicago win the Stanley Cup last season and had four goals and seven assists in 22 postseason games.

In the offseason, the Blackhawks lost 10 players through a salary-cap purge from their championship team but have kept their core intact. In December 2009, they gave multi-year contracts to stars Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane and Keith.

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