The Carolina Hurricanes know what it feels like to win a Stanley Cup championship. Evidently, they miss that feeling and continue to do everything possible to get back to the promised land. This offseason is clear evidence of that fact.
Carolina won the Cup in 2006, but have not been back since. In fact, they have only qualified for the playoffs once since winning it all. But the Hurricanes are rethinking how they run the franchise, and the team has demonstrated a new found dedication to winning after going out and spending some money on some talent this summer, most notably by trading for Jordan Staal and signing Alexander Semin.
Now, they have locked up one of their own for the foreseeable future.
Carolina signed Jeff Skinner to a six year contract extension worth roughly $34 million. He was in the final year of his entry level contract with the Hurricanes, but the 20-year-old has apparently proven enough to warrant a long term deal. In his rookie season in Carolina, Skinner played in all 82 games and tallied 31 goals and 32 assists. In an injury shortened season last year, due to a concussion Skinner suffered, the ‘Canes’ center put up 20 goals and 24 points in just 64 games.
You have to love the way that Carolina is making a push to become one of the top teams in the Eastern Conference, but you also have to dig how news breaks in the sports world today. Skinner’s extension was first made public via Twitter, by Hurricanes’ general manager, Jim Rutherford.
“It looks like we are going to be able to get Jeff Skinner tied up for a number of years,” tweeted Rutherford. “Exciting news for our franchise.”
This is good news for the Hurricanes and Skinner, who was the No. 7 overall pick in the 2010 NHL Draft, and it also is very good news for some of the other members of the 2010 class that produced the Calder Cup Trophy winner in Skinner. That should translate into a very nice payday for the likes of Tyler Seguin of the Boston Bruins and Taylor Hall of the Edmonton Oilers.
What I have a difficult time comprehending is that the NHL owners continue to say they have money problems in regards to a possible lockout on the horizon. You certainly would never know it judging by the large sums of money given out to free agents this offseason.