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Hurricanes sign Gleason to four-year extension

Carolina Hurricanes Eric Staal celebrates with teammates Joni Pitkanen (C) and Tim Gleason (L) after scoring the game-winning goal against the New Jersey Devils in the third period of Game 7 of the NHL Eastern Conference quarterfinals hockey playoffs in Newark, New Jersey April 28, 2009.

RAY STUBBLEBINE/Associated Press

The Carolina Hurricanes have signed defenceman Tim Gleason to a $16-million, four-year contract extension.



"He is one of our core players, someone who brings character and leadership to our locker-room, along with being a key piece on the ice," Hurricanes general manager Jim Rutherford said Monday in a statement. "This is a very important signing for our team going forward."



Gleason will receive $3.5-million next season, $4.5-million in 2013-14 and 2014-15, and $3.5-million in 2015-16.

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He is in his eighth NHL season and sixth with the Hurricanes. Gleason has one goal and 13 assists in 51 games this season and leads all Carolina defencemen in hits, plus/minus and minutes played.



In 526 career NHL games with Los Angeles and Carolina, the 28-year-old native of Clawson, Mich., has 15 goals, 99 assists and 514 penalty minutes.



Gleason was selected 23rd overall by the Ottawa Senators at the 2001 draft.



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