The Nuge’s New Deal- If you are a die-hard Oilers fan, you’ve probably already heard that the Edmonton Oilers announced today that they have signed Ryan Nugent-Hopkins to a 7 year contract extension for $42 million dollars. So the Nuge gets the same $6 million dollar cap hit as Hall and Eberle- not exactly surprising. What may surprise you is that RNH will out earn me in the next seven years (by a significant margin). I know, I know, I write blogs that get tens of hits and I sell parking equipment and you would think that would vault me into ‘PLAYA’ status. Sadly, it does not. However, after what has seemed a lifetime of watching players develop in the Orange and Blue and leave for richer pastures, I am elated that the Oilers are holding onto their blue chips and building a solid core.
With two first overall picks now locked up long term, I hope we will hear the same about Nail Yakupov in a year’s time. If Nail scores 25+ goals this season, it will be pretty hard to guess his cap-hit, won’t it? If he scores 40 this year, who knows? My guess is that he and Justin Schultz are signed to similar extensions as Nuge next summer. Great young core signed up long term- who would have thought that even four years ago?
To those of you who are saying the Oilers overpaid and that Nugent-Hopkin’s numbers last season don’t support this contract, your argument has some merit. However, as the advanced stat guys will tell you, RNH’s ‘arrows’ all point in the right direction and his PPG average is the same as Hall’s at the same point in their respective careers. With his shoulder now repaired, it is a safe bet that RNH will be a very good centre in the NHL for years. The question is, “how good?” Will he be one of the NHL’s elite or just above average. He has enough firepower around him to excel, so fans shouldn’t be too concerned.
My only hope for RNH now is that he is back for the first game of the season.
Until next time,
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