Jun 24 2013, 7:47pm CDT | by Poch de la Rosa
Fox Sports North's Brian Hall says the agreement virtually locks up the 35-year-old veteran coming off a season in which he tied for the league lead with 24 wins. Backstrom was set to become an unrestricted free agent on July 5 and expressed a desire to return to the NHL team he's played for.
"It just made too much sense not to re-sign him.
"We're familiar with Nik. He's familiar with us. He's earned the trust of his teammates through his professionalism and his work ethic. Nobody's more prepared as a goaltender than Nik. I've never seen a goalie practice that hard, and you've got to give him a lot of credit. He's been a model of consistency. He just finds a way to win games year after year. At 35 years of age, I think in today's day and age the way athletes prepare, the way they train, there's no reason why he can't even play beyond this contract.
"Hopefully, this isn't the last contract he signs with us."
Backstrom was grateful and thankful to be back.
"I don't think it has been a secret to anyone how much I've enjoyed playing for the Minnesota Wild and living in the 'State of Hockey.' So, for sure that was the team I was hoping for the chance to come back, and I'm really grateful and thankful that I can be back. It's a great place for me. It feels like home, so it's nice to be back."
In the end, all Backstrom wanted was to be happy.
"It's business to do for me, but like I said, happiness is something that you can't buy with money. It's something in your heart and in your mind. So that's the most important thing for me, to be happy."
He underwent successful sports hernia surgery in May.
Poch de la Rosa
Poch de la Rosa follows all major U.S. sports: NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL and the NCAA. His favorite teams are the Colts, Braves, Pacers, Sharks and Irish, respectively.
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