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Wild reward productive goalie, extend contract

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- The Minnesota Wild signed goaltender
Manny Fernandez to a multiyear contract extension before Friday
night's game against the Anaheim Mighty Ducks.

The 31-year-old Fernandez is 23-11-4 and his 2.20 goals-against
average is the fifth best in the NHL.

"The Wild's commitment to Manny and his commitment to the team
are based upon his play this season, and his performance with the
Wild ever since he started the first home game in team history on
Oct. 11, 2000," general manager Doug Risebrough said.

Fernandez is in the middle of his most productive NHL season and
already has posted a career high in wins. He has usurped Dwayne
Roloson as the Wild's No. 1 goaltender and could've become an
unrestricted free agent after this season.

"We see this as a step that will continue to improve our team
and help take us to the next level," Risebrough said.