Dustin Byfuglien Gets Big Contract Extension

The Winnipeg Jets have re-signed defenseman Dustin Byfuglien to a five-year contract, the team announced Monday. Byfuglien was sent to become an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season.

The deal is reportedly worth $38 million, according to multiple sources. That gives Byfuglien a $7.6 million AAV against the cap, making him the third highest paid defenseman in the NHL behind P.K. Subban and Shea Weber.

The actual salary breaks down like this according to ESPN’s Craig Custance: $8 million, $8 million, $8 million, $8 million, $6 million.

This season Byfuglien, an 8th round draft pick for Chicago in 2003, has put up 15 goals and 32 points in 52 games.

The contract is great news for Byfuglien, who has dealt with trade talk all season. If he hadn’t signed he may have been the big fish in the trade pond this month and faced a tumultuous few months of joining a new team and then dealing with free agency in June and July.

This isn’t as great of news for teams hoping to acquire a defenseman at the deadline. It’s also bad news for captain Andrew Ladd, who is scheduled to hit free agency at the end of the season. The sense coming from the team and insiders has been all year that the team could sign Byfuglien or Ladd, but not both.

That will make Ladd a hot trade acquisition this year, as the last place Jets will not want to let their captain walk for nothing.

More details on the contract have emerged.

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