NHL top goalie Vasilevskiy signs extension with Tampa Bay

AFP
Russia's Andrei Vasilevskiy, posing with the Vezina Trophy as the NHL's top goaltender, signed an eight-year contract extension worth $76 million Monday with the Tampa Bay Lightning (AFP Photo/BRUCE BENNETT)
Russia's Andrei Vasilevskiy, posing with the Vezina Trophy as the NHL's top goaltender, signed an eight-year contract extension worth $76 million Monday with the Tampa Bay Lightning (AFP Photo/BRUCE BENNETT)

New York (AFP) - Andrei Vasilevskiy, last season's Vezina Trophy winner as the National Hockey League's top goaltender, signed an eight-year contract extension with the Tampa Bay Lightning on Monday, the club announced.

The deal, worth $76 million, keeps the 25-year-old with Tampa Bay when he could have become a free agent next July.

"I'm very excited to sign this extension," the Russian backstop said.

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The contract matches one signed last July by Lightning forward Nikita Kucherov, a Russian who led the NHL this past season with 87 assists and also produced 41 goals.

The move comes after playoff disappointment for the Lightning, who led the NHL with 62 wins and a club-record 128 points but lost in the first round of the postsason to Columbus. Tampa Bay had reached the Stanley Cup Final in 2015 and the 2016 and 2018 Eastern Conference final.

Vasilevskiy went 39-10 with four overtime losses last season, leading the league in wins, with six shutouts, a 2.40 goals against average and a .925 save percentage.

The Russian was the 19th selection in the 2012 NHL Draft and is 124-59-15 with a 2.55 goals against average and 18 shutouts for his NFL career, but is only 15-15 in the playoffs.

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