The Hurricanes locked up their franchise player today, inking 23-year-old center Eric Staal to a seven-year contract extension that will kick in starting in 2009-10. The deal is worth $57.75 million, an average of $8.25 million a season. He will earn $6 million in the first season of the contract, and the deal will hit its peak in 2015-16, when he will make $9.5 million.
The Canes kicked off the online streaming of the news conference with a video montage of Staal's career, from being drafted to highlights of his young, but accomplished, career, with Lynard Syknard's "Simple Man" playing in the background.
The presser had a presidential feel, with Staal — in golf-friendly attire — signing his contract next to GM Jim Rutherford and in front of the media.
Rutherford said he was "extremely happy" to get the deal done and lock up Staal long term.