The Oilers have made a long-term financial commitment to 2015 1st overall pick, Connor McDavid, signing him to an 8-year, $100 Million contract extension that will start in the 2018-19 season, and expire at the conclusion of the 2025-26 season. McDavid will be 29 years old when his contract expires.
The contract carries an average annual value of $12.5 Million, which is $750,000 less per season than the value that was first reported by Hockey Night In Canada’s Elliot Friedman late last week. It was suggested at Wednesday afternoon’s press conference, by GM Peter Chiarelli, that McDavid took slightly less money than he could have, in exchange for term, and cap flexibility for the team.
This contract’s $100 Million dollar total value makes it the fourth largest contract in NHL history. But, the $12.5 Million cap hit is the highest AAV ever.
McDavid, 20, is coming off a historic sophomore season, in which he led the NHL in scoring with 100 points, 11 more than runner-up Sidney Crosby.
In addition to the Art Ross trophy McDavid received for his scoring title, he was also honoured with the Hart Trophy as league MVP, as well as the Ted Lindsay Award as the league most outstanding player, according to the players. McDavid was also named the to the NHL’s end-of-season 1st All-Star team, and selected to be featured on the cover of EA Sports’ NHL ‘18.
Regardless of the cost, locking up a generational talent, like McDavid, through his 20s will almost certainly be considered a major win for the Oilers, who ended a decade-long playoff drought last season, with McDavid’s dominance as the most significant contributing factor.