Ice Hockey - Capitals sign Holtby, Erskine to extensions

The Washington Capitals have re-signed rapidly improving goalie Braden Holtby and defenseman John Erskine to two-year contract extensions.

Ice Hockey - Capitals sign Holtby, Erskine to extensions

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Washington Capitals' John Erskine (L) and New York Rangers' Mike Rupp (C) battle for the puck in front of Capitals' goalie Braden Holtby in 2012 (Reuters)

Holtby, who was set to become a restricted free agent after this season, will earn $1.7 million in 2013-14 and $2 million in 2014-15 while John Erskine, 32, reached a two-year deal worth $3.925 million.

The 23-year-old Holtby has a 5-6-0 record this season with a 3.37 goals-against average (GAA), an .896 save percentage and one shutout.

Holtby opened the season 0-2-0 before Capitals first-year coach Adam Oates turned to back-up netminder Michal Neuvirth.

Neuvirth, however, was ineffective and Holtby, who was 7-7 with a 1.95 GAA for the Capitals during last year's Stanley Cup playoffs, has fared much better since re-entering the starting line-up.

Erskine has two points in 11 games and is averaging a career-high 19 minutes, 30 seconds of ice time this season.

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