The Vancouver Canucks chained up their “Bulldog” for two more years.
Tenacious 27-year-old defenceman Alex Biega has proven himself enough in the minors to warrant a one-way contract, GM Jim Benning decided.
“This is an old-school defensive defenceman,” Benning told reporters. “He battles. He earned this.”
Biega, who was set to hit unrestricted free agency on July 1, inked to a two-year, $1.5-million extension with Vancouver Tuesday.
The deal will pay the Montreal native $700,000 in Year 1 and $800,000 in Year 2. Biega’s previous five deals have all been two-way contracts; his last four deals were all one-year pacts.
“There were definitely tough times, and I think it’s safe to say I went through a little more adversity than the average guy getting to the NHL,” the AHL graduate told the Vancouver Sun. “But it’s just a belief that I have held onto. You compare yourself to guys on the ice every day and you just hang onto that belief you can play.”
The 5-foot-10 Biega has registered four assists and 12 penalty minutes in 25 games with Vancouver this season. He graduated from the AHL in 2014-15, appearing in seven big-league games and scoring a game-winner.
The blueliner played in 23 Calder Cup playoff games for AHL Utica last season, collecting four points and 16 penalty minutes. Biega has played 347 career AHL games with three teams.
A fifth-round draft pick by the Buffalo Sabres in 2006, Biega originally signed with Vancouver as free agent in the summer of 2013.