SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) -The San Jose Sharks signed center Joe Thornton to a three-year contract extension Sunday, keeping the 2006 MVP in teal through 2011.
Thornton has been the NHL's leading scorer since the Sharks acquired him from Boston on Nov. 30, 2005, scoring 239 points and winning the 2006 scoring title during that span.
The four-time All-Star had 22 goals and 92 assists last season while leading San Jose into the second round of the Western Conference playoffs. He became the third player in NHL history to record back-to-back 90-assist seasons, joining Wayne Gretzky and Mario Lemieux.
Keeping Thornton in San Jose with a long-term deal stretching through the prime of his career was a top priority for Sharks general manager Doug Wilson.
``In addition to his play on the ice, Joe leads by example and has as much love for the game as anyone I have seen,'' Wilson said. ``He will be an integral part of our franchise as we march towards our goal of competing for the Stanley Cup next year and for years to come.''

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