UPDATE TO THE UPDATE UPDATE: Per Capgeek, Pavel's cap hit is ACTUALLY going to be $7.5M over each of the next 3 years. That's a raise of $800K per season to stay in the NHL until the end of his career.
Great news from Twitter today
Signed 3 yr. extension. Detroit, glad to be here for 4 more yrs.Thanks to our fans, friends and Ilitch family @DetroitRedWings @danmilstein— Pavel Datsyuk (@Datsyuk13) June 18, 2013
News hit last night that this was happening, as Datsyuk's agent Barry Greenstin was traveling to Detroit to put the finishing touches on the deal which would likely take Datsyuk to the end of his North American hockey career.
Datsyuk still has one year and $6.7M left on his current deal and this extension can't technically be registered until July 5th, but if Datsyuk himself is tweeting it (or whomever is running Datsyuk's official account for him), then it's a done deal.
The contract will kick in after Datsyuk's 35th birthday (July 20th this year) and will carry the 35+ consideration to it when it comes to cap hit considerations (the hit will stay on the books regardless of whether Datsyuk retires). Pavel will be 38 when this extension expires and, at that point, just about everybody expects that he'll return to Russia to play out the rest of his professional hockey career.
We'll update with details on cap hit when those become available.