Anaheim Ducks re-sign Saku Koivu

By Jeff Shibley

Earlier today the Anaheim Ducks announced they have re-signed Saku Koivu to a one year contract extension. The contract is believed to be for $3 million.

Saku Koivu had a decent 2011-2012 season where he centered the second line and had 11 goals, 38 points as well as leading all forwards with a +7 in 74 games. Koivu is also known for his  leadership, and a great locker room presence. He is also plays a key role on the penalty kill, as well as good in the face off circle.

One of the best things about the news of this signing it almost assures the return of line mate and fellow finish forward Teemu Selanne. Since both players were set to be unrestricted free agents this off-season there was speculation that the Ducks might go with an all new 2nd line. With the return of Koivu, and the hopeful of Selanne the only new player would be who ever the Ducks bring in to play 2nd line left wing. Last season Jason Blake, and Niklas Hagman both played that role most of the season, but are also both unrestricted free agents, and it is not likely either of those players will return.

The Ducks have a few options as the new left wing, either someone from within the organization like Kyle Palmieri, or possibly a Unrestricted Free Agent from another team. Although I would assume he is returning to Phoenix Ray Whitney would be an intriguing possibility. A more likely scenario is a player from within mostly because it would save a lot of money, but also the Ducks have a lot of upcoming prospects that are going to need a shot sooner or later, and this might be the chance for a player like Palmieri to show he has what it takes.

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