From the King to the Czar.
On late Monday afternoon the New York Rangers officially locked up Igor Shesterkin to the tune of 4 years $22.6M dollar extension, which is the largest total contract in dollars and AAV ever given to a goalie coming out of their rookie contract per Frank Seravalli.
A lot of people are second guessing Chris Drury and company for the AAV given to Shesterkin since he does have a small NHL sample size. However, I’ll say this is how I’d like to see GM’s handle contracts more often moving forward. How often as fans have we all complained that a general manager has overpaid a player due to what they have done rather than what they will do. Four years from now we could say that this Shesterkin contract was an unbelievable steal by Drury if Shesterkin continues on the path that he’s on.
Last year, in what was a roller coaster ride of a season for the Blueshirts, Shesterkin still managed to post extremely solid numbers with a .916 save percentage and a 2.62 goals against average. That is pretty impressive for a team that dealt with all that they did on and off the ice last season. Pair that with also running the gauntlet that was the East division in the truncated covid season and its his numbers were solid.
The best part of the Shesterkin extension is that the Rangers decided against bridging their goaltender which has been one thing that this team would foolishly do with their young RFA’s in years past. If you believe in the player that you have and the ability that you believe they possess then lock them up when you can and don’t let the price tag get bigger than it needs to be. That’s how you build a sustainable winning franchise in the salary cap era. Drafting, developing, and then locking up your young franchise studs before they ever sniff UFA status.
This deal for Shesterkin will take him until he’s 29 through at least one full year of his unrestricted free agency years. That is some pretty masterful work for Chris Drury who has been under fire by the fanbase for some of the moves he has made this season and rightfully so. This extension is great for not only Shesterkin but for the New York Rangers as well and it’s a move that will allow Drury more flexibility to be able to round out the roster and make this team a true Cup contender. Now the Blueshirts know who they will have between the pipes as the club starts to set their sites squarely on Lord Stanley.
So much for being “furious” at the Pavel Buchnevich trade.Embed from Getty Images
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