The San Jose Sharks are reportedly close to announcing a two-year extension for Calder Trophy candidate Logan Couture. Ray Ratto of CSN Bay Area reports that while terms of the deal are not yet finalized, the team is expected to hold a conference call on Friday to make the deal official.
Couture scored 32-goals as a rookie last season, although he had played 25 games in 2009-10 and another 15 postseason games in the playoffs as well. His emergence as an offensive threat last season allowed Doug Wilson to shake up the Sharks roster this summer. Dany Heatley and Devin Setoguchi were traded to Minnesota in separate deals that saw Martin Havlat and defenseman Brent Burns heading to the Bay.
Mr. Plank of the Sharks blog Fear The Fin says the Couture deal is in line with Doug Wilson’s ‘contract pattern’, keeping the core together up until the end of the 2013-14 season:
Couture’s extension will carry him to the 2015 offseason, sticking with the contract pattern Doug Wilson has exhibited over the last two years when building his roster via free agency and trade. Couture, Dan Boyle, Joe Thornton, Patrick Marleau, and Joe Pavelski will all hit the free agent that offseason, setting the stage for what will be an extremely interesting summer. Only Couture will be a RFA that year, with all of the aforementioned players holding UFA status. This method is no coincidence– both Devin Setoguchi and Dany Heatley, who were traded in separate deals this summer for Brent Burns and Martin Havlat respectively, either signed or were signed to contracts that carried them up to that offseason as well.
Couture has one year left on his first NHL deal that will pay him $1.24 million. His new deal should give him a decent bump in pay, probably somewhere in the $2.5M-$3.5M range.
-Update- Craig Custance of the Sporting News tweets: “Told that Logan Couture deal is similar to James Neal’s contract, which would be 2-years at $5.75 million total.”
-Update #2- Mark Emmons at Working The Corners confirms that the Couture deal is official:
The Sharks do not release financial terms to contracts, but Comcast’s Brodie Brazil Tweeted earlier this morning that Couture will receive $2.75 million for the first year and then $3 million in Year 2. And I can confirm those figures are accurate.