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Wild signs G Niklas Backstrom

by Staff Writer / Minnesota Wild
News: Backstrom signed

Feature: Choice of reason

Q&A: ... with Tom Lynn

On the Fly: Nik Backstrom
(Wild Game Program feature)

Wild TV: Backstrom highlights

Wild TV: Backstrom top 5 saves
Wild TV counts down Niklas  Backstrom's top 5 saves since joining the Minnesota Wild

Wild TV: N. Backstrom
An upbeat montage of Niklas during the Wild's, 2007-2008, division winning season

Photo galleries:
Thru the years | 2008-09
All-Star naming | All-Star Game

Wild Radio's Kevin Falness catches up with Backstrom after signing

SAINT PAUL/MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. -- Minnesota Wild President and General Manager Doug Risebrough today announced the National Hockey League (NHL) club has re-signed goaltender Niklas Backstrom to a four-year, $24 million contract that will run through the 2012-2013 NHL season.

“Nik is one of the most reliable players and people on our team, and that combination enables winning,” said Risebrough. “A snapshot of Nik's three NHL seasons shows a staggering run of success, but to see that whole picture unfold daily, we have not been surprised. Instead, we are proud of what he has accomplished, and we are excited for what he will.”

Backstrom, 31 (2/13/78), is 28-18-4 with a 2.24 goals against average (GAA), a .925 SV Pct. and a team record six shutouts in 51 games this season and represented the Wild at the 2009 NHL All-Star Game. He is the only goalie to rank in the top five in GAA, wins, SV Pct. and shutouts this season. Backstrom ranks tied for second in the NHL in shutouts, fourth in SV Pct., tied for fourth in wins and GAA and has helped Minnesota rank second in the League in goals against this season at 144. He established franchise records with 33 wins and 1,498 saves last season and tied the record for games played (58). Among goalies playing 100 or more games since the beginning of the 2006-07 season, Backstrom ranks first in SV Pct. at .924, second in GAA at 2.19 and winning percentage at .660 and tied for fifth in shutouts with 15.

In 144 career starts, he has allowed three goals or less 127 times and two goals or less 86 times. In 66 starts following the NHL All-Star Game, Backstrom is 40-10-11 with a 2.04 GAA, a .926 SV Pct. and seven shutouts. He won the 2007 William M. Jennings Trophy with teammate Manny Fernandez as the tandem allowed a League-low 191 goals against. Backstrom also received the Bank of America Roger Crozier Saving Grace Award in 2007 as he recorded a league best .929 SV Pct. He is 84-39-18 with a franchise record-tying 15 shutouts in 150 career games with Minnesota.
The Wild originally signed the native of Helsinki, Finland as a free agent on June 1, 2006.

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