Within all of the talk of the Philadelphia Flyers bringing in some big name talent, whether it’s Rick Nash or Bobby Ryan, it would appear that one of their own would like his own contract situation settled the summer before he’s set to become a free agent.
Despite a year remaining on his six year deal that he signed prior to the 2008 season, Scott Hartnell has let it be known that he would like a contract extension to remain in Philadelphia.
Hartnell had a career year this season, posting some impressive numbers after several trade rumors put his future in Philly in question. But 67 points and an All Star Game appearance later, he’s now likely locked in for the foreseeable future.
The emergence of Claude Giroux certainly helped, as Hartnell thrived next to the budding superstar, but Hartnell was very good in how own right in 2011-2012. Of those 67 points, 23 came on the power play, 16 of which were goals. He played the physical game on the top line, with 188 hits on the season.
There’s no doubt that Hartnell is a key piece of the Flyers and is going to see a raise from that $4.2 million he’s currently making, especially if he puts up another season of 60-plus points. But with that whole CBA cloud hanging over the NHL right now, I wouldn’t count on a deal happening too quickly.
I don’t doubt that the Flyers would want to get something done with Hartnell prior to next summer, when the free agent market could end up driving up the price on him. But whether or not it could happen before the season starts, given the current state of the league, is unclear.
When you combine his ability to be an asset on the Flyers’ top line year after year with his fantastic presence in the locker room, you have a guy that a lot of teams could covet next summer. Look at the attention Shane Doan is getting on the market right now (albeit, in a much thinner free agent class).
Though I wouldn’t expect a deal to get done before the season, I could certainly see the Flyers locking up Hartnell for a few more years in Philly. He has already said he’d like to remain in the City of Brotherly Love and as long as the Flyers want him back, this isn’t the type of deal that will require too much squabbling. He’s 30 years old and isn’t going to see gigantic raise.
It’s likely the two sides will sit down in the coming weeks and potentially throw some figures around, but I wouldn’t expect a signing until this CBA business is behind us.