Zach Bogosian #44 of the Winnipeg Jets celebrates his goal against the New York Islanders during first period action on April 20, 2013 at the MTS Centre in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.
(April 19, 2013 - Source: Marianne Helm/Getty Images North America)

Jets GM: Bogosian has ‘tremendous amount of untapped potential’

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Every long-term contract comes with its risks, but even in that context, the Winnipeg Jets took a chance by inking defenseman Zach Bogosian to a seven-year, $36 million contract yesterday.

Bogosian has already enjoyed some solid seasons, but the Jets are paying him under the belief that the 23-year-old will develop into an elite blueliner. In other words, this is a contract they’re hoping he grows into.

“Well, Zach is still a very young player when it comes to defenseman age. There’s lots of room for his game to grow, and I think that’s the exciting aspect. We have Zach locked up for what are the best years of a defenseman’s career,” Jets GM Kevin Cheveldayoff said, according to the Winnipeg Sun.

“Zach is someone that we wanted to show our faith in we know that as he continues to grow (as) a defenseman, his role and his leadership and all aspects of his game are going to help this team to get to the next level.

“He is someone that I really believe there’s a tremendous amount of untapped potential that as he continues to mature as a player is going to blossom. His skating ability, his shot, his size, his work ethic, his physical strength. He’s a young defenseman that, for us, is going to continue to grow.”

For his part, Bogosian is humbled and happy that Winnipeg was willing to show this level of trust in him. That being said, he doesn’t seem particularly worried about the increased criticisms that potentially comes with a contract of this size.

“It’s not my job to listen to people that say I’m overpaid or underpaid or whatever,” Bogosian said. “It’s just my job to go out there and do the right things and help the team win.”

Bogosian added that he wants to play a leadership role by setting a good example with his level of effort.

The then Atlanta Thrashers took Bogosian with the third overall pick in the 2008 NHL Entry Draft. Since then he’s recorded 103 points and 237 penalty minutes in 297 games. He’s also suffered a variety of injuries over the last few years that’s limited him to 71 games in 2010-11, 65 contests in 2011-12, and 33 matches in the shortened season.

Related:

After spending $93 million in a week, Jets GM says owners ‘committed to building a winner’

NHLPA hire Bruce Meyer brings a ‘wealth of knowledge,’ says Fehr

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Bruce Meyer’s résumé of victories as a lawyer is a long and impressive one, and he has now joined the NHL Players’ Association as a senior director of collective bargaining, policy and legal, the union announced Thursday.

During his tenure of more than 25 years at the law firm Weil, Gotshal and Manges LLP, Meyer represented the NHLPA, NFLPA and NBPA.

The NHLPA said in a statement that in his new position, Meyer “will focus on a wide array of policy and legal issues.”

In working for those unions, he was involved in matters such as collective bargaining and arbitration, as per his online profile.

“Bruce will be a great addition to the NHLPA’s staff. He brings a wealth of knowledge to this new role coming from his law firm where he gained three decades’ worth of valuable experience, including effectively representing the NHLPA and other Players’ Associations as outside counsel,” said NHLPA executive director Don Fehr in a statement.

The NHLPA said Meyer will begin at his new position in mid-August.

The news of this hire comes more than a month after the league sued the NHLPA after Dennis Wideman‘s 20-game suspension for hitting linesman Don Henderson was reduced to 10 games by a neutral arbitrator.

Related: Report: NHL dismisses neutral arbitrator who reduced Wideman’s suspension

Sweet ride: Blackhawks sponsor CJ Wilson Racing’s Porsche Cayman at Road America

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Chicago Blackhawks fans, start your engines!

Yes, according to MotorSportsTalk, the Blackhawks have become the main sponsor of CJ Wilson Racing’s No. 35 car, a Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport, for the upcoming IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge event at Road America next month.

That’s a sweet ride.

From MotorSportsTalk:

The partnership will officially launch at the United Center on Wednesday, August 3, from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m in advance of Saturday’s race. Fans will have the opportunity to get up close to the car, meet the drivers and Blackhawks Ambassador Denis Savard, and have their picture taken.

The race takes place Aug. 6 at Road America in Wisconsin.

Third team’s the charm? Devils ink Gormley to one-year, two-way deal

<>during the first period at TD Garden on November 12, 2015 in Boston, Massachusetts.
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Since being selected by the Coyotes at 13th overall in the 2010 NHL Draft, Brandon Gormley has had a difficult time breaking into the league on a full-time basis.

On Thursday, the 24-year-old Gormley joined his third NHL team, signing with the New Jersey Devils on a one-year, two-way deal worth $650,000 at the NHL level, the club announced.

Despite his draft status, Gormley has yet to play a full season in the big league, although this deal could give him an opportunity to end that. For the Devils, the deal adds more depth to the blue line in the organization and for a friendly price.

Last season, Gormley split time between the Colorado Avalanche and its farm team, the San Antonio Rampage. Despite some high expectations about where he could fit on the Avs’ blue line, he was eventually put on waivers in January.

He ended the season with one assist in 26 games with the Avalanche, and hit the open market after Colorado didn’t give him a qualifying offer.

Wild sign Dumba to two-year, $5.1M deal

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After ongoing contract talks between the Minnesota Wild and restricted free agent defenseman Matt Dumba, the two sides have come to a deal.

The Wild announced Thursday that they had signed Dumba to a two-year deal, worth a total value of $5.1 million.

A breakdown of the new deal:

— In 2016-17: $2.35 million.

— In 2017-18: $2.75 million.

Selected seventh overall by the Wild in 2012, Dumba had his most productive campaign this past season, with 10 goals and 26 points in 81 games.

Known for his offensive skills — he had 20 goals and 57 points with Red Deer in the WHL in his draft year — Dumba also brings a coveted right-shot to the Wild blue line, which features four players with contracts of four or more years of term remaining.

As per General Fanager, the Wild still have $2.168 million in projected cap space, but they have secured all their remaining restricted free agents.