The San Jose Sharks got a jump start on their offseason by signing restricted free agent Devin Setoguchi to a three-year contract extension. The three-year deal announced by the Sharks has been confirmed by Craig Custance and Matthew Taylor to be worth $9 million.
The reasonable $3 million cap hit keeps Setoguchi around after a productive fourth season in the NHL. The deal for Setoguchi is a healthy raise from the 1-year, $1.8 million contract he signed a season ago; he’ll be under contract until he’s 27 years old.
The former 8th overall pick racked up 22 goals and 41 points over the course of the regular season; including 7 goals and 10 points in 18 playoff games this year. In fact, the 2010-11 campaign was the third straight season Setoguchi netted 20+ goals—it was also the third year in San Jose when he was a regular on the team for the entire season. He has 84 career goals in 267 career games. In a press release, Sharks GM Doug Wilson said he only expects him Setoguchi to continue to improve:
“We feel Devin is an important part of our team and we look forward to him continuing to elevate his game to the level he is capable of.”
For the Sharks, the deal was a step in the right direction as they try to shape their team for next season. Setoguchi proved to be a clutch playoff performer with his seven goals—not to mention two overtime game-winners and a hat trick against the Detroit Red Wings in the Western Conference semi-finals. Signing him to an extension, the Sharks confirmed that Setoguchi is part of the Sharks future core along with guys like Logan Couture, Joe Pavelski, and Ryane Clowe.
The next order of business is filling out the rest of their roster. GM Doug Wilson has already announced that the team will not be re-signing Scott Nichol or Jamal Mayers for next season. The team also has to make a decision on pending unrestricted free agent defenseman Ian White, who was brought over in a midseason deal from the Carolina Hurricanes.
While White would help solidify the blueline, Setoguchi is only the first step to shoring up the forward corps. Next, the organization will have to reach terms with Andrew Desjardins who is slated to be the 4th line center next season and possibly Ben Eager to provide grit up front.
The Sharks were undoubtedly helped by today’s news that the salary cap was increased to $64.3 million. Accordingly, San Jose was able to lock-up their most important pending restricted free agent. Now the team will be able to focus making the rest of the team better at the draft and when free agency opens on July 1st.
The Buffalo Sabres visit the Philadelphia Flyers on Tuesday. This match-up features two teams off to slow starts and looking to work their way up the standings in their respective divisions.
You can check out the action on NBCSN or the NBC Sports’ Live Extra (7:30 pm ET).
CLICK HERE TO WATCH LIVE
Here are some links to check out for tonight’s game:
Flyers put Raffl (upper body) on IR
NHL on NBCSN doubleheader: Sabres vs. Flyers; Ducks vs. Sharks
Bylsma: ‘We need to get more’ out of Reinhart
After missing the last week with an upper-body ailment, Flyers forward Michael Raffl has been placed on injured reserve.
To fill his spot, the Flyers recalled Taylor Leier from AHL Lehigh Valley.
Raffl, 27, has appeared in three games this season, scoring once while averaging 12:21 TOI per night. He hasn’t suited up since a 7-4 loss to Chicago on Oct. 18, failing to suit up for Thursday’s loss to Anaheim, Saturday’s win over Carolina and yesterday’s 3-1 defeat in Montreal.
The Flyers are taking on Buffalo tonight (7:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN).
Philly could make this IR designation retroactive to last Tuesday, which is when Raffl last played. It’s unclear how GM Ron Hextall will handle Raffl’s $2.35 million cap hit with regards to IR, but he’ll need to do some adjusting soon once injured defenseman Michael Del Zotto and forward Scott Laughton get back in the mix.
14 — The number of shorthanded goals surrendered by the Chicago Blackhawks. Yes, this topic has been beaten to death already, but for good reason. The next highest number in the NHL is eight, courtesy the Calgary Flames. It’s just very unlike the ‘Hawks. Duncan Keith and Niklas Hjalmarsson, two of the best defenders in the game, have been on the ice for nine PP goals against! Jonathan Toews, one of the best defensive forwards ever, hasn’t fared much better; he’s been on for seven.
9 — The number of power-play goals scored by the Nashville Predators. A pretty remarkable stat, especially considering the Preds have just two wins in their first five games. That kind of PP production can’t be counted on to continue, so they’d better improve at five-on-five. Also, avoid the soup in Detroit. It’ll getcha every time.
17 — The total number of goals scored in all five New Jersey Devils games. And in case you thought that was low, two of those goals came in overtime. So far, the highest-scoring game the Devils have experienced was a 3-2 loss in Tampa Bay, with each of the other four finishing with a score of 2-1. Average number of goals per game this season? Just 3.4.
7.4 — The average number of goals scored in an Ottawa Senators game. In other words, the Sens have a new coach, but not much has changed. Ottawa has played five games and has yet to give up fewer than three goals. Fun to watch, though.
-7.6 — The average shot differential for the Colorado Avalanche, who’ve still managed to win three of their first five. The Avs have only outshot one opponent so far, by just two shots in their season-opener against Dallas. In their last three games, they’ve been outshot by a combined margin of 105-62. To be fair, all three of those were on the road against tough teams, but lots of work left for Jared Bednar, too.
The Sharks didn’t make many offseason splashes after advancing to the first Stanley Cup Final in franchise history, but the one they did make — signing Mikkel Boedker — was fairly significant.
And now, the Sharks are looking to spark Boedker’s campaign.
The Danish speedster will be promoted to the top line next to Joe Thornton and Joe Pavelski for tonight’s home date with Anaheim, per CSN Bay Area.
“[Boedker has] got to shoot the puck more…and he knows that,” head coach Peter DeBoer explained. “I’m not concerned about him, but the nice thing about playing with those two guys is they push you to go to the areas where you have to score.
“Hopefully that gets him going.”
One of the fastest skaters in the league, Boedker signed a four-year, $16 million deal with San Jose on the opening day of free agency. The hope was the 23-year-old would improve team speed and build upon an impressive ’15-16 campaign, in which he scored 17 goals and tied a career high with 51 points.
But things haven’t exactly gone according to plan yet — Boedker has one point in six games, and just four shots on goal.
The hope is he’ll enjoy a similar spike in production like the one Tomas Hertl had after getting promoted Thorton-Pavelski line in early January. Hertl responded with 11 points in 12 games that month, 10 in 16 games in March, and 11 in 20 playoff games.
Speaking of Hertl, he’ll drop down to center the third line — between Patrick Marleau and Melker Karlsson — for tonight’s contest.