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Ducks sign Getzlaf to 5-year, $26.5 million extension @NHLdotcom

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) -The Stanley Cup champion Anaheim Ducks signed Ryan Getzlaf to a five-year extension worth $26.625 million that begins next season and runs through 2012-13.

The 22-year-old center has seven goals and 14 assists in 19 games this season.

"We are extremely pleased to be able to sign Ryan to a long-term deal," general manager Brian Burke said Tuesday. "He's demonstrated great character and work ethic to complement his talent, a rare combination at such a young age."

Getzlaf would have become a restricted free agent at the end of the season. The third-year player will earn $5.325 million per year under his new deal.

"I was looking to sign a long-term deal and be one of the top guys on this team," he said. "The expectations are going to go up and they continue to grow as the years go by. That's part of being a hockey player and growing as a player. I'm excited to have that opportunity right now."

Getzlaf had 25 goals and 33 assists, both career highs, in all 82 regular-season games last season. He led the Ducks in scoring during the playoffs with seven goals and 10 assists.

"I was given the opportunity to negotiate a contact this early and the team showed that they wanted me here as much as I wanted to be here," he said. "It only took a couple of weeks to bang out the numbers."

Getzlaf's deal is worth more than the five-year, $21.25 million offer sheet Dustin Penner signed with Edmonton after the Ducks declined to match and let the 24-year-old left wing go in August.

Penner is earning $4.25 million in each of the next five seasons. He scored 29 goals for the Ducks last season.

At the time, Burke said that such a big-money offer to a young player like Penner was "highly inflationary in that age group."

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