Los Angeles Kings' Anze Kopitar, left, of Slovenia, and Vancouver Canucks' Chris Tanev fight for the puck during the second period of an NHL hockey game, Saturday, March 21, 2015, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
Jae C. Hong
March 24, 2015

VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) The Vancouver Canucks have signed defenseman Chris Tanev to a five-year contract extension Tuesday.

Tanev has 16 points on two goals and 14 assists this season and is signed through 2021.

''Chris has developed into an excellent NHL defenseman and is an extremely important part of our team,'' Canucks GM Jim Benning said in a statement.

''He's a player you want on the ice in the most critical points of a game and we're excited about having him with our group as we continue to play to win today, with an eye to the future.''

The 25-year-old's contract is worth $22.25 million with a salary-cap hit of $4.45 million.

In 216 games with Vancouver, Tanev has 10 goals and 33 assists.

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