Fresh off the quasi-new news that Kyle Turris believes that he can eventually score 30 goals in a season, the Ottawa Senators have announced that they have locked up their second line center to a five-year extension that carries an average annual value of $3.5 million.
What a steal!
When Turris was acquired in exchange for David Rundblad and a second round pick, one of the biggest concerns or gripes with the trade was the fact that the Senators were taking on a player who would be under team control for a shorter period of time – Turris was slated to become an UFA at the conclusion of the 2015/16 season.
Thanks to the announcement of this extension, those fears are allayed.
With one year left on his current contract that carries an average annual value of $1.4 million, the Senators have ensured that Turris – barring a trade obviously – will be under contract through the 2017-18 season. In other words, the Senators have bought out Turris’ first two years of unrestricted free agency – under the current terms of this expiring NHL CBA – for a relatively modest sum. Turris joins Erik Karlsson as one of two Senators who are currently locked up to long-term deals that will keep them in Ottawa past the 2015/16 campaign.
Prior to this season, the young center had yet to prove that he was capable of playing important minutes against difficult opposition; however by playing alongside Daniel Alfredsson, they exhibited some exemplary secondary scoring depth while playing a strong two-way game.
Of course, locking Turris up to such a deal does have some risk. Last season was the first in which he truly became a key part of a NHL roster. With a deal of such length, the organization has to hope that he can keep developing as a player because some of the underlying numbers suggest that there was some dependency on Alfie to create offense. Since the question of when Alfie will retire will linger over the organization until the time that such a decision is made, they will need Turris to develop into a player who makes those around him better.
Should Turris continue to develop as a player and eventually fulfill some of his offensive promise, the Senators will have helped solidify their depth down the middle for the foreseeable future at a very cost efficient price.
Now if Ottawa’s franchise progression mirrors Turris’ development and take another step in the right direction towards contention, Turris’ cap friendly deal will be one that should give management the flexibility to add some important piece(s) that can help push this team closer towards Stanley Cup contention.
Even if Turris doesn’t come as close to the lofty 30 goal aspirations that he has, the risk involved is mitigated by the fact that his salary is relatively inexpensive.
Murray looking stunned and Turris looking jacked as pen is put to paper.