Bruins sign defenceman Johnny Boychuk to US$10.1-million, 3-year extension

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BOSTON - The Boston Bruins have signed defenceman Johnny Boychuk to a three-year contract extension worth US$10.1 million.

"Johnny really wanted to stay here. I think that's the overriding theme," general manager Peter Chiarelli said before Tuesday night's game against the New York Rangers.

"He has obviously been a good performer for us. ... He's a Bruin type of player—physical, and yet he can score the shot, and he's a punishing player. He chose not to test the market, which was nice for us, and we have him under contract for three more years."

Boychuk, 28, has three goals and seven assists in 52 games this season and is second among Bruins defencemen with a plus-23 rating. He will earn US$3.1 million, $3.4 million and $3.6 million over the next three years; he also gets a limited no-trade clause.

He would have become an unrestricted free agent after the season.

"I would think that Johnny, if he had gone to the market, he could have gotten more," Chiarelli said. "The grass is not always greener, and he probably would have gotten more, and maybe some more terms. He's still young, though. At the end of this deal, he'll be 31."

Last season, Boychuk had three goals and a career-high 13 assists in the regular season, and three goals and six assists during the run to Boston's first Stanley Cup victory since 1972.

The Bruins have four other potential unrestricted free agents: Chris Kelly, Gregory Campbell, Shawn Thornton and Daniel Paille. Chiarelli said he is talking to all of them.

"It'd be nice to get stuff done before the trade deadline, to know what you're going to plan for the future," he said.

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