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Flyers reward Simmonds

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PHILADELPHIA -- After bringing grit and scoring punch in his first season in Philadelphia, the Flyers rewarded forward Wayne Simmonds with a six-year contract extension on Thursday.

Simmonds was an instant fan favourite after coming over from the Los Angeles Kings in a trade for Mike Richards.

The 23-year-old Simmonds had career highs with 28 goals and 49 points.

"I don't feel pressure, but obviously I'm going to go out there, and I work as hard as I can every day whether it's on the ice or off the ice," Simmonds said. "I think I'm going to continue to progress as a player, and I'm going to do everything I can to help the Philadelphia Flyers win."

Simmonds has no regrets about missing out on the Kings' Stanley Cup win. Simmonds said he doesn't look back and is only focused on helping lead the Flyers to their first championship since 1975.

Financial terms were not announced Thursday.

Simmonds was involved in two preseason dust-ups -- a man threw a banana at him and he had an altercation with former Rangers forward Sean Avery -- and the fans showed their appreciation on opening night with a huge ovation.

-- from the news services

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition August 17, 2012 C5

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