Predators extend Klein — five years, $14.5 million

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Kevin Klein’s big performance in the playoffs last season has paid off nicely for him.

The Predators announced they reached a five-year extension with the 27 year-old defenseman good for $14.5 million. That’s good for a cap hit of $2.9 million a year. Klein had been making $1.35 million a year against the cap on his last deal.

While he was a mostly unknown guy before the postseason, Klein’s performance in Nashville’s series win over Detroit in the playoffs put him on the map as he scored a goal in both Game 3 and Game 4, the latter a game-winner.

Now he’ll be counted on for bigger minutes and being one of the core guys on what’s a relatively young group of defensemen. With Shea Weber and Hal Gill already there, he’s got plenty of veteran help to lean on.