Chiarelli got his guy in Andrej Sekera, who many smart hockey minds believed to be the best blueliner available heading into free agent frenzy this year.
Sekera done to EDM. six years, $5.5M AAV and a no-move clause.— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) July 1, 2015
Sekera admits the McDavid factor played a part in his decision.— Matt Henderson (@Archaeologuy) July 1, 2015
Incidentally, it's the same contract Jeff Petry signed with Montreal after acquiring him from the Oilers during the 2014-2015 NHL season. One of the biggest items on Chiarelli's list this summer was finding a replacement for Jeff Petry, and he's accomplished that in fine fashion with the Sekera signing.
At 29 years of age, the six year term is lengthy but necessary in unrestricted free agency. As far as the money goes, it's a palatable amount at a time of year when teams always overpay for the best assets available.
Sekera brings offensive ability and solid underlying numbers to the table. He had a career year offensively with the Carolina Hurricanes in 2013-2014 scoring 11-33-44 in 74 regular season games. He followed that up with an excellent all-around performance in 2014-2015 managing a career-best CF% of 54.22 with a ZSO%rel of -4.57. He split time with the Hurricanes and Kings, who acquired him at the deadline for a first round pick and prospect Roland McKeown.
The addition of Andrej Sekera to the blueline is a sizeable step forward for a team that is still posed to struggle at the position yet again next season. Chiarelli would do well to continue improving at the position as the day and the summer progress.