The Pittsburgh Penguins locked up their super-sub for two more years. On Saturday, Penguins GM Ron Hextall dished a new two-year contract to defenseman Chad Ruhwedel.
The deal is two years at $800,000 per year and will run through 2023-24, a considerable value for a depth defenseman who has filled a regular role this season.
“Chad exemplifies what it means to be a teammate,” said Hextall. “His work ethic and positive attitude never waver, and we are happy he will be a part of our team for the next couple of years.
Ruhwedel is in his first full season as a regular. The 31-year-old built a career as a seventh defenseman able to sit for long stretches before capably filling in for spot duty or as an injury replacement.
This season, the 5-foot-11, 191-pound Ruhwedel has appeared in a career-high 47 games. He has six points, including one goal, which he scored last Tuesday in the Penguins comeback win over the Philadelphia Flyers in the Sidney Crosby 500th-goal game. Ruhwedel is a plus-3 while playing an average of 15:25 minutes per game.
Chad Ruhwedel has also established career bests in hits (91), blocked shots (43), and takeaways (12), while his six points are tied for the second-highest total of his career. He has been a staple on Pittsburgh’s number-two ranked penalty-killing unit, where he’s third among team defensemen averaging 1:38 of shorthanded time-on-ice per game.
The San Diego, California native, broke into the NHL with the Buffalo Sabres organization as an undrafted free agent following a three-year collegiate career at the University of Massachusetts-Lowell. He served as an alternate captain in his final season. Ruhwedel has appeared in a combined 234 career NHL regular-season games between Pittsburgh and Buffalo, netting 33 points (8-25-33).