It’s safe to say that things haven’t exactly gone according to plan since the Ottawa Senators acquired Matt Duchene from the Colorado Avalanche last November. Since the blockbuster three-way deal that also included the Nashville Predators, the Sens have failed precipitously in the NHL’s power rankings and have gone through a litany of very public scandals and well… let’s just say it’s been tough to be a Sens fan the past calendar year.
Lost in all of the noise though is the fact that Duchene is very quietly having an outstanding year this season. The 27 year old has 10 goals and 27 points in 21 games this season and is now officially in the top five of the NHL’s scoring race for 2018-19. With no contract commitments to the Sens beyond this season though, does the team risk losing another star player for virtually nothing in return?
Not so fast, says NHL insider and TSN analyst Bob McKenzie. The “Bob Father” dropped a bomb on social media this morning when he reported that Duchene and the Sens are in the midst of a contract negotiation that could pay the player as much as $9 million per season over eight years.
Check it out:
It’s premature to say this deal will get done, there’s still work to be done, but it sure sounds like talks are progressing. There seems to be earnest desire on both sides to reach agreement. My best guess would be term of 8 years and AAV somewhere north of $8M but south of $9M.
As if often the case, beyond the basics of term and AAV, the devil can often be found in the details. Contract structure, signing bonus vs. salary, no-trade and/or no-move protection...those are amongst the things that can cause any negotiation to go sideways.
Wow… who saw this coming!?
With everything that’s happened in Ottawa the past while, the general consensus around the league was that Duchene would leave the team via free agency for greener pastures. It looks like that plan may be out the window…
Regardless of how things play out, you HAVE to be pulling for Sens fans in this negotiation. Sure, the team is easy to hate on and owner Eugene Melnyk is one of the biggest villains in the sport, but let’s get real… the Sens really, REALLY, deserve some good news after all they’ve been through the past 12 months.