The last restricted free agent is off the board.
Reaching the final major pressure point on the first day of the regular season, the Ottawa Senators and Brady Tkachuk finally ended their stalemate, agreeing to terms on a seven-year contract extension to keep the forward and likely future captain around for the long term.
Tkachuk will earn $57.5 million throughout the life of the agreement, which works out to $8.214 million on an annual basis.
— Ottawa Senators (@Senators) October 14, 2021
Both Tkachuk and the Senators each made some concessions with the agreement, which likely means there's fair value reached between the two. While immensely important, an annual salary in excess of $8 million is a bit steep for a player who has averaged 0.63 points per game for his career. That said, the Senators had to pay Tkachuk what he should grow to be worth in order to keep him in the fold for another seven seasons and through the first decade of his professional career.
Tkachuk will have no-trade protection through the final three seasons of the pact.
While this is very much a deal that protects the future of the franchise, it's important the Senators completed it now. Had the stalemate continued, Tkachuk's absence would have threatened to undermine the upward trajectory the Senators are planning to continue on this season. He's the team's most important player, and a prolonged absence would have had a considerable effect.
Tkachuk had 17 goals and 36 points last season, playing in all 56 games. He finished second league-wide in both shots and hits.
Ottawa opens its season Thursday night versus the Toronto Maple Leafs.
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