The Washington Capitals have re-upped with one of their key restricted free agents, agreeing to terms with defenseman Karl Alzner on a four-year, $11.2 million deal.
“We are very pleased to sign Karl Alzner to a contract extension,” Caps GM George McPhee said in a statement. “Karl is just entering his prime and has been a model of consistency for our organization since he entered the League.
“He plays tough and valuable minutes against some of the NHL’s top players every game.”
Alzner, 24, will carry an average annual cap hit of $2.8 million until the 2016-17 season.
The former WHL Calgary standout set a career-high for average time on ice per game (20:57) last season, upping it to 22:18 in the playoffs.
Washington’s No. 5 overall pick at the 2007 NHL Entry Draft, Alzner finished second on the team in blocked shots last year (85), fourth among all defensemen in hits (45).
He was in the final year of a two-year, $2.57 million deal.
Earlier this summer, McPhee shot down any notion of possibly losing Alzner to an RFA offer sheet, saying Washington would match anything given to Alzner or Washington’s other key RFA — forward Marcus Johansson.
The deal is a solid one from McPhee, who now has his two youngest blueline talents — Alzner and 23-year-old John Carlson — locked up for a combined $6.76 million per season until 2017.