David Backes, right, is in his fifth season with the St. Louis Blues.

The St. Louis Blues on Friday announced a five-year contract extension for forward David Backes.

Backes has 73 goals and 89 assists in 296 career regular-season games with the Blues, with 439 penalty minutes.

"David could have been an unrestricted free agent at the end of this season and we are excited that he has made the long-term commitment to the Blues organization," Blues general manager Doug Armstrong said in a statement. "The way he handles himself on and off the ice represents what the Blues are all about."

The Blues selected Backes in the second round of the 2003 NHL entry draft out of the United States Hockey League. The six-foot-three right wing went on to play three seasons at Minnesota State.

He was scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent next summer.

"As much as you'd like to say you're mentally strong and you can block it out, it's something that does weigh on you," Backes said. "I think it's human nature that you're thinking about it now and then.

"The Blues are making a big commitment to keep me here."

The Minneapolis native won silver with the United States at the Vancouver Olympics, with a goal and three assists in six tournament games.

The deal for Backes is worth $22.5 million US overall.

With files from The Associated Press