The Philadelphia Flyers have moved quickly in getting players locked up in the past couple of weeks, as both Wayne Simmonds and Scott Hartnell signed new contract extensions to remain with the club for the foreseeable future.
Now the extension front will turn to Claude Giroux. Being a free agent following the 2013-2014 season, Giroux can’t sign an extension with the club until after July 1st of 2013. But it’s something that Paul Holmgren is already likely thinking about. What might an extension like that cost the Flyers?
Giroux took his game to an elite level in 2011-2012, finishing with 93 points on the year, including 28 goals and a fantastic 38 points on the power play. He established himself as a top notch two-way center and should be one of the top few players in the league by the end of next year, if he’s not already.
There’s no doubt that the Flyers will want to lock him up long-term, and barring any total meltdown in the negotiating process or his play, he’ll be a Flyer for a very long time.
A lot of what Giroux ends up getting paid is going to depend on a new CBA and what max contracts are going to be allowed to look like. The word right now is that owners want to limit max contracts, in terms of years, to just five years, which is a far cry from where they currently are.
Dollar-wise, it’s a bit easier to project. I’d expect something up in the $7 million a year range as far as his cap hit goes. The term will obviously depend on the new CBA, but his deal might not look so different from what Anze Kopitar received in his contact with the Los Angeles Kings when he signed a seven-year deal a few years ago, if not a bit more pricey.
I don’t see Giroux’s deal as something that will break the bank, but having already extended Hartnell and Simmonds and a new deal coming for Giroux next summer, it’s probably a good thing that the team wasn’t able to sign Shea Weber.
We should have a better idea of numbers after the season, but this is a deal that will get done eventually. I wouldn’t be surprised to see a deal announced on July 1st, 2013 as the Flyers are expected to lock Giroux up for as long as they can, whether it’s for five years or for 10.