Jonathan Ericsson close to signing contract extension with Red Wings

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

The Detroit Red Wings are reportedly close to a contract extension with defenseman Jonathan Ericsson.

The Detroit Red Wings are closing in on a contract extension with defenseman Jonathan Ericsson, according to a report from TSN's Bob McKenzie.

McKenzie reports the contract could be four or five years in length and be worth as much as $4 million per season.

Ericsson, 29, was originally a ninth-round draft pick by the Red Wings (No. 291 overall) in 2002 and is in the final year of a three-year contract that currently pays him $3.25 million per year.

In 288 career games, he's scored 14 goals to go with 47 assists. Injuries have limited him to just 11 games this season, but when healthy he has been one of their best possession players. With Ericsson on the ice this season the Red Wings have attempted more than 53 percent of the shot attempts during 5-on-5 play, which is the highest mark of any defenseman on the team.

Due to the retirements of Nicklas Lidstrom and Brian Rafalski over the past couple of years, as well as the loss of Brad Stuart in free agency, Ericsson's role has expanded in Detroit to the point where he's now averaging more than 22 minutes of ice-time per game.

Without a new contract extension Ericsson would be eligible for unrestricted free agency this summer.

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