Minnesota Wild sign goaltender Niklas Backstrom to four-year contract

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VANCOUVER, B.C. - Niklas Backstrom is staying put.

The Minnesota Wild have signed the all-star goalie to a four-year contract, keeping him from becoming an unrestricted free agent this summer. Backstrom has been among the top goalies in the league the past couple years.

Entering Tuesday's game in Vancouver, he had a record of 28-18-4 this season and was among the league leaders with a .925 save percentage and 2.24 goals-against average.

If the Wild hadn't re-signed Backstrom, GM Doug Risebrough would have faced a decision about whether or not he should be traded before Wednesday's deadline.

The 31-year-old spent several seasons playing in Europe before joining the Wild as a free agent in the summer of 2006.