The Flyers announced late last night that they had agreed to terms on a 6-year contract extension with forward Wayne Simmonds. The deal, which many are reporting as a $3.84M average annual value (which would work out to be roughly $23M over 6 years) is scheduled to take effect after the upcoming season. The Flyers obviously view the fan favorite Simmonds as an important part of their long-term core, and they want to lock him up before he becomes a restricted free agent after next season. There is a sense that the Flyers might have bought high on Simmonds, as he’s coming off a 28-goal, 49-point year that was easily his best season to date. However, even if he regresses a little down to the 20-goal mark, a $3.84M cap hit is still very reasonable for his production. If he continues to perform like he did last season or even improves (he’s just entering his prime), the deal will look like an absolute steal. Next, the Flyers will probably look to try to extend the contracts of Scott Hartnell (who is a pending unrestricted free agent) and Claude Giroux (who becomes a restricted free agent after the 2013-2014 season). Obviously, they’ll still also be looking at potential defensive upgrades. Overall, the contract is a bit of a gamble, but figures to be a slight overpay at worst and an absolute steal at best, which is a risk that the Flyers are certainly willing to take.
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