The Colorado Avalanche have agreed to terms with restricted free agent all star Mikko Rantanen. The deal is for 6-years and is worth $55.5m. That’s an annual average cap hit of $9.25m.
As expected, the deal carries with it no signing bonus money but is heavily front loaded with Rantanen receiving $24m in the first two seasons.
Picked 10th overall in the 2015 draft, Mikko Rantanen has developed into one of the best wingers in the NHL. Last season, he set career highs with 31 goals and 87 points in only 74 games while being selected as an all star for the first time.
With high-profile RFAs like Patrik Laine, Brayden Point and Matthew Tkachuk signing shorter-term bridge contracts over the past week, it is even more impressive that the Avalanche front office were able to get Rantanen signed long-term. The six year deal buys out two of Mikko’s unrestricted free agent years and will assure that the team will have a key piece of their core signed until after the 2024-25 season.
With an AAV of $9.25, Rantanen becomes the highest paid Avalanche player - by a wide margin. That said, it is a very good contract when you compare it to the $10.893m six year deal that Mitch Marner signed with the Toronto Maple Leafs a few weeks ago.
As the team announced the contract, General Manager Joe Sakic had nothing but praise for Rantanen while mentioning that a long—term deal was always the goal:
“Mikko has established himself as one of the premier young wingers in the NHL and is a big part of our core group. We look forward to having him back with the team as we get ready to start the season.” -
With Mikko locked up, the Avalanche still have more than $7m in cap space to work with this season. It is expected that Rantanen will be ready to be in the lineup Thursday night for the season opener.
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