The Colorado Avalanche Hockey Club announced today that the team has agreed to terms with 22-year-old forward Matt Duchene on a five-year contract extension through the 2018-19 season.
"Matt already is and will be a big part of our team's nucleus for the long term," said Avalanche Executive Vice President of Hockey Operations Joe Sakic. "We all felt that it was important for us to secure his rights for several seasons. With his great skills, speed and character, he represents the identity we want the Avalanche to be."
After only four seasons with Colorado, Duchene already ranks 30th on the franchise's all-time scoring list with 193 points (82g/111a) in 266 career games. He has finished in the top three in scoring on the Avalanche in three of his four seasons.
"In 2009, I was thrilled to have been selected by the Avalanche, my favorite team," Duchene said. "I have worn this uniform with pride in my first four professional seasons in Denver, and I appreciate the organization believing in me for the long-term future.
"I have been working really hard again this summer, and I am looking forward to the upcoming training camp and season."
The center finished tied for the Avalanche scoring lead last season with 43 points and led the team with 26 assists. He finished second with 17 goals and led the club in game-winning goals (3), shots (132), faceoff percentage (54.6 percent) and takeaways (44).
During the 2013 campaign, he set career highs for assists in a game with three (March 8 vs. Chicago and April 26 at Phoenix) and tied a career-high with four points (1g/3a) on March 8 versus Chicago. He also had a four-game goal streak (Feb. 11-18) Ė which matched his career-long Ė and scored the latest overtime goal in franchise history on March 10 against San Jose with one second left in overtime (4:59). It was his third career overtime-winning goal.
Coloradoís first-round selection (third overall) in the 2009 Entry Draft, Duchene was a Calder Trophy finalist in the 2009-10 season and was named to the NHL All-Rookie Team after scoring 55 points. He shared the NHL goal-scoring lead among rookies with 24 goals, which ranked seventh most in franchise history by a rookie. He finished second in the league among first-year players with 31 assists.
In 2010-11, the Haliburton, Ontario native was selected to his first NHL All-Star Game and became the youngest player in franchise history (20 years, 84 days) to lead the team in scoring with 67 points in 80 games. He also became the franchise's youngest player to reach 100 career points, doing so at the age of 20 years and 10 days on Jan. 26, 2011.
Duchene has also represented his home country at the last three IIHF Men's World Championships. At the 2013 tournament this past May, he had five points and finished second on Team Canada with four goals.
__________________ ďItís embarrassing. Iím embarrassed to be here right now. Itís not even funny. And itís just embarrassing, the way we, you know, the energy we have in the room and the way we approach practices and the way we approach this game. Itís not how youíre going to win any games in this league." - Jean-Sebastien Giguere, April 8 2013