Sep 2 2013, 7:52pm CDT | by Poch de la Rosa
This was confirmed by the Chicago Tribune's Chris Kuc, who also says Crawford agreed to the deal on the same day he was in his hometown of Montreal to celebrate his team's second Stanley Cup victory in four seasons.
The contract extension is the culmination of a string of good fortunes for the Blackhawks goaltender, who not only helped Chicago win the 2013 Stanley Cup, but also got engaged and received an invitation to Team Canada's Olympic orientation camp in Calgary.
"Being able to get a chance to bring the Cup back home (with) all the people I played minor hockey with and grew up with and all my family was pretty special to start off -- to add this on top of it is amazing. I want to be in Chicago for my whole career and this is amazing to be able to do this and get this deal done.
"It's just been getting better and better. I'm on a bit of a high right now and hopefully I don't come down from it. The last couple of months have been great."
Crawford's new contract runs through the 2019-20 NHL season, per ESPN Chicago.
At $6 million annually, the new deal is a far cry from the three-year, $8 million deal which will have him earn $2.5 million in the upcoming 2013-14 season. He now ranks third on the Blackhawks' payroll behind Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane, according to USA Today Sports' Mike Brehm.
On his part, Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman describes Crawford as a "top-notch goaltender" they needed to have.
"The salary cap is something we have to certainly plan for and think about as an organization, but I don't think it's the focus right now in terms of this. The reality is we need to have a top-notch goaltender in our organization. We got one right here in Corey. We know him well. He's grown up in our organization. He's experienced the ultimate with our group."
The 28-year-old Crawford saw his save percentage and goals-against average (GAA) improve from .926 to .932 and 1.94 to 1.84 respectively, in the 2013 NHL playoffs from the regular season. His performance helped the Blackhawks continue their Stanley Cup dominance in a four-season span.
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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