Pavel Datsyuk wants to sign contract extension with Red Wings

USA TODAY Sports

Despite speculation that he wants to return to the KHL, Pavel Datsyuk expressed a desire to remain with the Detroit Red Wings beyond next season.

Detroit Red Wings forward Pavel Datsyuk expressed his desire to stay with the team beyond next season, according to Ansar Khan of MLive.com.

Datsyuk is entering the final year of a seven-year, $46.9 million contract in 2013-14. At the conclusion of the season, he will become an unrestricted free agent.

Due to the NHL lockout earlier this year, Datsyuk returned to his native country to play in Russia's Kontinental Hockey League. Upon his return to North America, the native of Sverdlovsk expressed how he would like to conclude his career playing in his homeland.

This led to speculation that he might make that transition at the conclusion of his current contract. Despite a faulty report last week, Datsyuk's representation denied that he had already agreed to a contract with a KHL team.

On Friday, Datsyuk further put those worries to rest when he stated he wanted to return to Detroit beyond next season, via MLive:

"It's not 100 percent, but I hope we agree and sign more. I'm looking forward (to signing with the Red Wings). I would love to stay.''

Datsyuk is one of the most enjoyable players to watch in the NHL. Hearing that he wants to continue playing in the league is wonderful news for North American hockey fans everywhere. In terms of his potential return to Russia, Datsyuk still hopes to finish out his career in the KHL:

"This is my goal, but you never know how this go. I would love to finish (in Russia), give back to my friends and fans in Russia. I hope so I'll be in good shape (then).''

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