January 28, 2009
Henrik Zetterberg of the Detroit Red Wings left last night's game with the Columbus Blue Jackets with back spasms. Hopefully they subside before he has to lug to the bank the incredible amount of cash the Wings are about to hand him. From Ansar Khan of MLive.com:
It will be a 12-year deal worth slightly more than $72 million, making it the longest and most lucrative (in total value) contract in franchise history.
The Red Wings were able to lower the salary-cap figure to slightly more than $6 million per season by adding two years at $1 million per season to a 10-year deal they had been negotiating with Zetterberg's agent, Marc Levine.
The Detroit News is reporting a deal in the "10-year, $75 million range."
If Khan's numbers are correct and Zetterberg's cap hit is around $6 million per season -- up from $2.65 million in his current deal -- this is a victory for the Wings. Lower than what Marian Hossa, Nicklas Lidstrom and Pavel Datsyuk currently cost against the cap; on par with Brian Rafalski. Inking him before the summer, and to what amounts to a lifetime contract, is an impressive feat by Wings management.