The Philadelphia Flyers and John Stevens agreed to a one-year contract extension Friday that will take the second-year coach through the 2008-09 season.

"John has built strong relationships with many of our young players as well as with the players that joined us over the summer," Flyers general manager Paul Holmgren said.

"We believe that he is the right coach to lead our team in a positive direction."

The 41-year-old Stevens has the Flyers (16-13-3) in eighth place in the Eastern Conference a year after they had their worst season in franchise history. Stevens went 21-42-11 for the Flyers last year after he was hired in October to replace the fired Ken Hitchcock.

"They have a long history of winning here and I am excited to be a part of that moving forward," Stevens said.

Stevens led the Flyers' American Hockey League affiliate, the Philadelphia Phantoms, to the 2005 Calder Cup.

The Flyers play Friday night at Buffalo.