Mar 19, 2010, 1:30 PM EST
What a great month-or-so for Ryan Kesler. First, he warms the hearts of many American hockey fans with his great play (and amazing empty net goal) for USA hockey in the Olympics. Then he lands the cover role for the Wii-exclusive hockey game NHL 2K11. He’s been one of the ten best skaters in the league since the trade deadline.
And now he’s rich.
The two-way center signed a six-year extension with the Vancouver Canucks today, according to The Globe and Mail. TSN’s Bob McKenzie reports that the six year deal will be worth about $5 million per year, making the deal in the neighborhood of $30 million.
Looking at Vancouver’s long-term salary cap situation, I would say that the Canucks have done a solid job wrapping up core players at reasonable rates (at least since GM Mike Gillis took over). The Sedins have twin contracts that will mean a combined cap hit of $12.2 million per year, Mikael Samuelsson could turn out to be a steal at $2.5 and Alex Burrows is definitely a steal at $2 million.
Naturally, like any team, they have a few worries. A lot rests on Roberto Luongo staying healthy during his Rick Dipietro-style contract and I’m not sure spending $10 million on injury prone defensemen Alex Edler, Sami Salo and Kevin Bieksa is particularly prudent.
Still, overall, the Canucks have a great core of hard working players without a true albatross contract and no one crucial to re-sign. Most NHL teams would kill to be in that situation – and to have players like Ryan Kesler.
- TGIF: Five NHL games to watch this weekend 1
- Wounded Wing: Howard (MCL sprain) out 2-4 weeks 2
- Wild coach accuses Sharks of embellishment 56
- Lundqvist hooked after three first-period goals as Rangers’ woes continue 28
- Burke wants the Flames to be — yep, you guessed it — more ‘truculent’ 46
- Flames fire GM Jay Feaster 36
- Video: Projected rise in salary cap could have some players ‘licking their lips’ 22
- Discuss: Blackhawks score big on Rivalry Night on NBCSN 37
- Crosby: If I had to guess Thornton’s suspension, I’d say 10 games 85
- Cowen gets two-game suspension for hit on Girgensons 12
- Video: Penguins’ Orpik stretchered off ice; Bruins’ Thornton given match penalty (184)
- Neal suspended five games for kneeing Marchand in the head (156)
- Bruins coach admits Thornton crossed the line, slams Pens for not being ‘truthful’ (138)
- Pens put Orpik on IR (132)
- Orpik suffers from concussion, including memory loss (118)