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Clutterbuck signs three-year extension with Wild

by Adam Kimelman
The Minnesota Wild Thursday signed right wing Cal Clutterbuck to a three-year contract extension. Terms of the deal were not released, but the move prevents Clutterbuck from becoming an unrestricted free agent July 1.

Clutterbuck, taken by the Wild in the third round of the 2006 Entry Draft, is just as happy to be staying.

"It never really crossed my mind to go anywhere else," he said. "It's one of those things where I'm pretty happy that the people here want me here as much as I want to be here. It's something you don't really find a lot in hockey these days and fortunately I've found it."

Last season, as a rookie, he set a League record with 356 hits. He also had 11 goals and 18 points in 78 games, and as much as his hits were important, he had just 76 penalty minutes, showing his ability to play hard and smart.

In 54 games this season, he's already equaled his 18 points from last season, and with 3 goals in seven games leading into the Olympic break, he's already surpassed last season's 11 goals. And he hasn't slowed down the hard-charging play that heralded his arrival last season. Despite missing seven games with injury, he leads the League with 252 hits, and is on pace for 350.

"Coming into the season I wanted to work hard and I knew if I did that they would appreciate my position," Clutterbuck said. "If I kept bringing the physical part of my game and bring a little bit of offense, I knew they'd appreciate what I'd be doing."

Clutterbuck said his goal for the future is to become a consistent 20-goal scorer, and he's constantly working at that aspect of his game.

"I think the start of this year I had a lot of opportunities and circumstances where I've been able to shoot the puck," said Clutterbuck. "I've also found myself in situations where I've been able to get the puck off and on net. It's something I'm working on."

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