Jul 4, 2013, 12:50 PM EDT
One of the most important players in Devils franchise history is sticking around for at least three more seasons.
On Thursday, New Jersey announced it had reached a contract extension with Patrik Elias, ensuring the 16-year veteran — who’s spent his entire career with the Devils — would remain with the club.
“To Lou, all my teammates and Devils fans, I’m excited to sign a new contract and be back with New Jersey,” Elias said in a statement. “This year marks my 17th year with the Devils and it’s very special to be a member of one organization for my entire career.”
The deal is for $16.5 million, according to Chris Johnston of Sportsnet. It carries an average annual cap hit of $5.5 million — slightly down from the $6 million hit from Elias’ previous deal.
(NorthJersey.com’s Tom Gulitti confirms Elias has a full no-movement clause, just like his last deal.)
Elias, 37, is the club’s longest-tenured skater (Marty Brodeur is the longest-tenured player) and holds the franchise record for most points in a season and career game-winning goals.
He’s coming off a solid 2013 campaign — 36 points in 48 games, 18:43 TOI average — but had concerns about re-upping in New Jersey given his seven-year, $42 million deal was set to expire tomorrow.
“It’s special for me to play for one team,” he told the New York Times in mid-April. “It would be special to play here my whole career.
“But I understand the business side.”
Both Devils GM Lou Lamoriello and Elias wanted to keep negotiations silent — there was a gag order in effect throughout contract talks — but it was clear both organization and player wanted to continue the relationship.
The Devils hold Elias in high esteem. In February, head coach Peter DeBoer said he felt the Czech forward was a Hall of Famer.
“I don’t think there is any doubt he’s a Hall of Fame player,” DeBoer told the New Jersey Star-Ledger. “It’s a great luxury to have him on the ice and in the dressing room. He thinks like a coach and he has a world-class player’s skills.
“When you’re building a hockey player, you can’t ask for much more than that.”
As for the financials…
With the move, the Devils now have 19 players signed for next season with around $12 million left under the salary cap.
There is still plenty of work to be done. New deals are still required for RFA forwards Adam Henrique and Jacob Josefson, and the future of UFAs David Clarkson and Marek Zidlicky remains cloudy at best.
Mar 13, 2014, 2:15 PM EDT
Comments section should be interesting for this one.
Mar 13, 2014, 2:11 PM EDT
All the latest from the blue paint…
Mar 13, 2014, 1:26 PM EDT
After five straight losses.
Mar 13, 2014, 12:42 PM EDT
The rich get richer.
Mar 13, 2014, 12:17 PM EDT
“The whole time in my head I never thought about getting traded or leaving at free agency time.”
Mar 13, 2014, 12:12 PM EDT
The Wild have a nice cushion, but a tough remaining schedule.
Mar 13, 2014, 11:48 AM EDT
Just months after he demanded a trade out of Washington.
Mar 13, 2014, 10:50 AM EDT
They have to adjust after losing Michael Grabner.
Mar 13, 2014, 9:58 AM EDT
It looks like the Penguins might stick with that line going forward.
Mar 13, 2014, 9:01 AM EDT
Their pre-Olympic slump seems like a distant memory.
Mar 13, 2014, 8:04 AM EDT
Thursday’s collection of links.
Mar 13, 2014, 1:47 AM EDT
Memorable moment for him.
Mar 13, 2014, 1:32 AM EDT
Two teams separated by 34 points in the standings.
Mar 13, 2014, 12:50 AM EDT
Mar 13, 2014, 12:27 AM EDT
There’s a new No. 2 seed in the Central Division.
Mar 12, 2014, 11:52 PM EDT
No call on the play.
Mar 12, 2014, 11:28 PM EDT
The climb gets a little steeper.
Mar 12, 2014, 10:51 PM EDT
Mar 12, 2014, 10:30 PM EDT
Mar 12, 2014, 10:12 PM EDT
Closing in on career-high in points in first season with Edmonton.
- Here are three ‘major changes’ the NHL should consider 0
- Callahan: I wanted to stay in New York 19
- Playoff bubble watch — Wild edition 7
- Video: Ryan Kesler injured on knee-on-knee collision, on his way back to Vancouver 10
- Discuss: Bruins run over Habs in newest chapter of historic rivalry 24
- Peverley to undergo heart procedure, will miss rest of season 13
- Comeau gets two games for boarding Smith 9
- Three things the Canucks haven’t done well under Torts 22
- Gillis won’t say if Tortorella’s lost Canucks room 31
- Stars win one night after Peverley collapse, give Miller first Blues loss 6
- Chiasson ‘shaken up’ by Peverley incident, won’t dress for Stars tonight (74)
- Steve Moore remains shocked, disgusted about Todd Bertuzzi attack (72)
- ‘It’s obvious Tortorella can’t come back next year,’ writes Vancouver reporter (61)
- Flyers’ Luke Schenn on first-period brawl: ‘That’s the way it goes’ (57)
- Video: Dryden on why hockey should ‘give up the fighting, but keep the fight’ (57)