The Carolina Hurricanes continued a busy and productive off-season by announcing today that forward Jeff Skinner has been signed to a six-year contract extension totaling $34.35 million dollars, with an average annual value of $5.725 million. Skinner will earn $4.35 million in 2013-14, and $6 million per year for the next five years.
The Hurricanes' 2010 first-round draft pick, who turned 20 in May, enters the 2012-13 season in the last year of his entry-level contract with the Hurricanes. The new contract extends the term to 2018-19 and wraps up a dynamic young player who already has 51 goals, 107 points, an All-Star Game, and a Calder Trophy on his NHL resume after just two seasons.
Hurricanes general manager Jim Rutherford broke news of the deal himself on twitter last night:
@HurricanesGM It looks like we are going to be able to get Jeff Skinner tied up for a number of years. Exciting news for our franchise.
The press release from the team follows.
Press release - Canes Sign Jeff Skinner to Six-Year Extension
RALEIGH, NC – Jim Rutherford, President and General Manager of the National Hockey League’s Carolina Hurricanes, today announced that the team has signed forward Jeff Skinner to a six-year contract extension. The deal will pay Skinner $4,350,000 in 2013-14 and $6 million per season from the 2014-15 season through the 2018-19 season.
“Jeff is a cornerstone player for our team, and his long-term commitment to the Hurricanes is great news for our franchise and our fans,” said Rutherford. “At 20 years old, he is still in the very early stages of his career, and we felt it was important to ensure he would be spending much more of it in Raleigh.”
Skinner, 20, completed his second NHL season in 2011-12, ranking second among Hurricanes skaters in goals (20) and third in points (44) in 64 games played. The Markham, Ont., native was third on the team in power-play assists (9) and power-play points (13), and fourth on the team in power-play goals (4), despite missing 16 games due to a concussion.
The Hurricanes’ first pick, seventh overall, in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft, Skinner (5’11”, 193 lbs.) won the Calder Trophy as the NHL’s top rookie in 2010-11, ranking first among league rookies in points (63), second in assists (32) and third in goals (31). He scored his 30th goal on April 6, 2011, against Detroit, becoming the youngest player in franchise history and the seventh-youngest player in NHL history to score 30 goals (18 years, 325 days). Skinner became the youngest All-Star in NHL history when he skated for Team Staal at the 2011 NHL All-Star Game in Raleigh at the age of 18 years, 259 days, breaking the record set by Steve Yzerman (18 years, 267 days) in 1984. In 146 career NHL games with the Hurricanes, Skinner has totaled 51 goals, 56 assists (107 points) and 102 penalty minutes.
Prior to turning professional, Skinner totaled 141 points (77g, 64a) and 106 penalty minutes in 127 career games for Kitchener of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL). In 2009-10, he became the first Kitchener Ranger in 23 years, and the only Canadian Hockey League (CHL) player in his draft class, to score 50 regular-season goals. Skinner has also represented Canada at several international competitions, including the 2011 and 2012 IIHL World Championships.
[1:00 PM UPDATE]: Here is audio from Jeff Skinner's media availability: