Leafs ink Ponikarovsky to 3-year extension

Alexei Ponikarovsky was rewarded for a career season by the Toronto Maple Leafs on Thursday with a three-year contract extension worth $6.315 million US.

Alexei Ponikarovsky was rewarded for a career season by the Toronto Maple Leafs on Thursday with a three-year contract extension worth $6.315 million US.

The fourth-round pick (87th overall) of the 1998 draft has recorded only 120 career points (54-66) in 268 games with Toronto but the majority of those points were recorded in his last three seasons as a Maple Leaf.

Spending a solid portion of the2006-07 campaignas a top six forward with Toronto, the six-foot-four, 220-pound left-winger tied a career-high in goals (21) and established new personal bests in assists (24) and points (45) in 71 games this season.

The 27-year-old native of Kyiv, Ukraine, also added 63 penalty minutes and finished third on the team with a plus-minus rating of plus 8.

Ponikarovsky will make $1.575 million next season, $2.24 million in 2008-09 and $2.5 million in 2009-10.

With files from the Canadian Press