The Boston Bruins have re-signed Tyler Seguin for six years with a contract worth an average of $5.75 million annually.
Seguin had a big year in his sophomore season as an NHL player. He put up career highs in goals, assists and points with 29, 38 and 67. Those 29 goals led the team, as did the 67 points, and so he became the youngest player in team history to lead in scoring. His +34 rating was second in the NHL, he scored seven game-winning goals, posted his first career hat trick in November 2011, played in the 2012 All-Star Game and won the Bruins’ Seventh Player Award. In the Bruins’ short playoff run, his overtime goal in Game 6 made it possible for the series to stretch to seven games, even though the outcome was not ideal for Bruins fans.
His rookie year was good as well, though he did play fewer games in the regular season–11 goals and 11 assists in 74 games–but he really broke out in the Bruins’ run to the Stanley Cup. He set a league record for points in a single playoff period when he put up two goals and two assists during the second period of the second game in the Eastern Conference Finals.
Plus, he has most likely learned his lesson about not missing mandatory meetings and breakfasts after being scratched for a game against Winnipeg for missing a team breakfast. Hey, he’s still young and still learning his place.
With Brad Marchand having received a new four-year contract recently, now the only member of the team’s dynamic second line in need of re-signing is Patrice Bergeron, though his contract is good through 2014-15.
Seguin is at an informal practice today at Ristuccia Arena alongside pretty much every defenseman on the team, both goalies and an assortment of forwards, including new addition Chris Bourque.
UPDATE: Seguin’s biggest fan among the 2012 U.S. Olympic athletes, Aly Raisman, has congratulated her favorite player via Twitter. “congrats! I’ll definitely be watching this season! Good luck with everything :),” she said.
UPDATE 2: Seguin joined general manager Peter Chiarelli on a conference call to discuss the new contract.
“I’m a Bruin, happy to be part of this group of guys — they’re my brothers,” Seguin said, echoing Marchand’s characterization of the team as a family. “I have high expectations of myself…that’s going to keep me motivated, keep me going.”
“[Seguin's] a young exciting player, maturing before our eyes…the sky’s the limit for Tyler,” he said. “He’s [already] a high level skill player…and I see a player who’s committed to getting better.”
When asked to name players who helped Seguin get used to playing in the big show, he named Mark Recchi along with Bergeron, whom he termed his current role model.
“Obviously I know I’m not going to get to Bergy’s stage, but it’s what I strive to be,” Seguin said.
He praised coach Claude Julien‘s work in shaping his game and said he doesn’t want to play center anymore because he enjoys being on the wing.
Chiarelli acknowledge there’s a certain level of risk in signing players now when no one knows how the future may look regarding salary caps, terming it an inexact science, but he said he would rather sign now and make adjustments as needed later instead of taking a wait-and-see approach.
“We want to put the best team on the ice for our fans…but in a responsible way. It’s about making smart decisions,” he said.