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Coyotes sign centre Mike Ribeiro to four-year contract

Dallas Stars' Mike Ribeiro celebrates after scoring the team's second goal against the Vancouver Canucks during the second period of an NHL game in Vancouver, B.C., on Tuesday March 6, 2012.

DARRYL DYCK/THE CANADIAN PRESS

The Phoenix Coyotes showed they're not afraid to spend in free agency, signing centre Mike Ribeiro to a four-year deal worth $22-million.

Ribeiro will count $5.5-million against the salary cap for a team that has an expanded budget under new ownership.

The 33-year-old centre said before the trade deadline that he was seeking a "long-term" deal to re-sign with the Washington Capitals, who acquired him at the 2012 draft.

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He turned down a three-year, $14-million deal there.

Ribeiro had 13 goals and 36 assists in 48 games with Washington this past season.

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