It came down to the wire, but in the end it got done. Johnny Gaudreau, restricted free-agent, has signed a long-term extension for six years with the Flames. The surprise? The price. Some pegged the Gaudreau camp asking price of 8 million. Start high in negotiations I guess. The Flames were reported to be coming in low, around 6.5. In the end, the deal was for just around 6.75 million a year, largely a STEAL of a deal for the club. It means the team is positioned well to add additional pieces in the future. It also means the nonsensical caveat to salaries–no one earns more than the captain–might be true.
Why did Gaudreau sign for under market value? Assuming his value was more? Armchair GMs pegged the deal just north of 7 million, and few fans would’ve batted an eye. Others rightly noted the deal is fair given it only bought 1 year of UFA (the max 8 years would’ve potentially added a million), and as a 17 minute a night point producer with only 2 years in the league. But GM Brad Treviling continues to impress with exceptional value for exceptional players. We can rest assured that Flames fans will reap the benefit of the next 6 years. As for Gaudreau, he gets to hit UFA sooner, and cash in on the payday of a lifetime assuming he produces at the clip his young career has shown. Let’s just hope management can cobble together not only a winning, but a Championship team soon.
Here’s what others are saying about the deal: