Mike Knuble Signs One-Year Extension

Via an official release, the Washington Capitals have re-signed right wing Mike Knuble to a one-year contract extension through the 2011-12 season. The monetary terms of the deal have yet to be disclosed (UPDATE: The Washington Times’ Stephen Whyno reports that Knuble’s deal is worth $2 million).

Knuble, whose two-year deal worth $5.6 million expires at the end of this season (he would have become an unrestricted free agent), has had an up-and-down season, much like the Caps as a whole. After starting slow with eight goals through the 2010 portion of the season, Knuble heated up at the Winter Classic and scored 16 of his 24 goals in 2011. He has nine goals in his last 13 games and 16 assists to go with his 24 goals.

Knuble is one of five active players with 20-plus goals in eight straight seasons (Jarome Iginla, Marian Hossa, Ilya Kovalchuk and Martin St. Louis). The official press release breaks down his stats even further:

There were 34 forwards aged 35 or older in the NHL in 2010-11…only one of those 34 forwards achieved…20 or more goals, 200 or more shots on goal, 40 or more points, 75 or more games, plus-10 or better while averaging 17 or more minutes per night.
Knuble has been a steady presence in the locker room and on the ice for the Caps, especially this season as he has mentored rookie Marcus Johansson. While Johansson has seen time on the top line with Knuble, the two have developed instant chemistry. And of course, his power and grit is a perfect juxtaposition for Alex Ovechkin’s speed and Nicklas Backstrom’s finesse while the three have been the top line for the better part of two seasons. With 10 total players (including Knuble) having expiring contracts, re-signing Knuble was a good move. It guarantees his veteran leadership for at least one more season as players like Jason Arnott, Marco Sturm and Scott Hannan are all eligible to become free agents.

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