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It didn't seem as though the Vancouver Canucks were convinced that Thatcher Demko could be their bellcow netminder now and without question in the future when free agent Jacob Markstrom appeared to be a priority last offseason.
Now there is no doubt.
According to multiple reports, the Canucks have signed the 25-year-old Demko, who has performed at, or close to, a Vezina Trophy-level this season, to a five-year contract extension worth $25 million.
It's a reasonable contract for any-above average goaltender, and the Canucks have bought up a few unrestricted free agent seasons as well in the deal, adding to its value. Demko will turn 30 during the final season of the agreement.
Demko has 12 wins in 25 appearances for the underperforming Canucks, and owns a solid, but unspectacular .917 save percentage. But when accounting for shot quality and saves made above average, Demko rockets toward the top of the league in terms of individual impact.
Demko is also coming off an outstanding relief appearance in the Stanley Cup Playoffs last summer, stopping 98.5 percent of the shots he faced in four games.
Vancouver is on the hook to pay over $9 million on goaltenders next season with Braden Holtby set to earn the second instalment on the two-year, $8.6 million deal signed this past offseason. However, it's possible that Holtby could be an option for the Seattle Kraken in the upcoming expansion draft.
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