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MONTREAL (AP) _ The Montreal Canadiens agreed to a three-year contract extension with defenseman Karl Dykhuis, who would have become an unrestricted free agent after the season.

The 29-year-old Dykhuis is in his ninth year in the league, his third with the Canadiens. He leads the team in the plus/minus category.

``Karl possesses very good offensive skills and brings experience and speed to our defensive squad,'' general manager Andre Savard said Saturday.

Dykhuis was acquired from Philadelphia in 1999. He has 37 goals and 81 assists in 514 NHL regular-season games.