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Nashville Predators sign D Kevin Klein to five-year, $14.5 million extension

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With just hours to go until the NHL lockout becomes official, the Predators have announced that they've signed defenseman Kevin Klein to a five-year, $14.5 million extension.

This keeps Klein in Nashville for the foreseeable future at a very reasonable price. The deal will pay him $3 million per year for the first three years and $2.75 million for the last two.

"My family and I love Nashville; the fans, my teammates and the city have been very good to us," Klein said in a press release on the team's website. "I am excited about being a part of this organization and community well into the future."

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Klein, 27 (12/13/84), recorded career highs in points (4g-17a-21pts) and assists, while tying a career high in goals in 2011-12. He also tied for 24th in the League, and led the Predators, in blocked shots (151); ranked third on the team in average ice time (19:56) and was one of just two NHL defensemen to play more than 35 games and register four or fewer penalty minutes during his fourth full NHL campaign a season ago. The Kitchener, Ont., native has 65 points (12g-53a) in 309 career regular-season games and nine points (3g-6a) in 28 postseason contests, which included four points (2g-2a) during the 2012 postseason, tying him for first among club blueliners.

Nashville's third selection, 37th overall (second round), in the 2003 Entry Draft held at Nashville's Bridgestone Arena, Klein captured a silver medal with Team Canada at the 2004 World Junior Championships in addition to winning the 2004 Ontario Hockey League championship as a member of the Guelph Storm.