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Atlanta Extends Dustin Byfuglien

via Chris Vivlamore tweet,

Thrashers have re-signed Dustin Byfuglien to multi-year contract. Details to come.

added 4:01pm, via Craig Custance tweet,

Told the Byfuglien deal is for 5-years in the $5 million per year range.

added 4:05pm, via Thrashers PR…

The Atlanta Thrashers have signed defenseman Dustin Byfuglien to a multiple-year contract extension, according to General Manager Rick Dudley.

“Dustin has emerged into an elite player this season and been invaluable as a leader both on and off the ice,” said Dudley. “It was a priority to sign him and we’re looking forward to witnessing his All-Star caliber play for many years to come.”

Byfuglien, 25, leads the team and ranks fifth in the NHL among defenseman in scoring with 43 points (17 goals, 26 assists) this season while leading all league defenseman in goals. He has tallied six game-winning goals, one shy of the NHL record for a defenseman in a single season and tied the Thrashers single-game scoring record for a defensemen with four points (one goal, three assists) against Boston on Nov. 28. Byfuglien was named the NHL’s second star of the week (period ending Nov. 28) and the league’s third star for the month of November. For his efforts this season, he was also named an NHL All-Star.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Atlanta Thrashers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: dustin+byfuglien


Alan's avatar

This has turned a rather drab and uneventful day into a really good day!

The deal is for 5yr, $26m, or about $5.2m/yr.

Posted by Alan from Atlanta on 02/15/11 at 07:23 PM ET

TheFreak's avatar

Good news. I hope he can maintain and continue to improve his skill set that earned him his pay day.

Posted by TheFreak on 02/15/11 at 07:43 PM ET


Fantastic news: Byfuglien is an awesome player who, if he wants to, can dominate a game from the back end. A great rags-to-riches story for the kid too.

And as a Canucks fan, I am delighted to see Byfuglien signed into the Eastern Conference for the next 5 years.

Posted by fcjbencard on 02/15/11 at 09:22 PM ET

redxblack's avatar

I think Atlanta overpaid a bit, but that’s not a bad thing. If they can lock in long term and his career continues at the pace it has, they have a franchise player that can pull people into the game.

I’m also glad to not have to see him play my team too often.

Posted by redxblack from Akron Ohio on 02/15/11 at 09:39 PM ET

Primis's avatar

The good news:  ATL locked him up.

The bad news: ATL overpaid him based on potential, not proven production still.

It’s a gamble, and a big one at that..  ATL quite frankly may have priced themselves out of one or two of their other still-developing d-men by jumping on this.

Posted by Primis on 02/15/11 at 10:18 PM ET

Luongo-is-my-hero's avatar

ya, sounds like a pretty big gamble to me as well.  over 5 million a year for Buffy leaves him over paid by at least a million per season.  Hopefully for Atlanta he continues to develop, and the beginning of this year was not an oddity.

Posted by Luongo-is-my-hero on 02/15/11 at 11:48 PM ET

Alan's avatar

Consider how much cap room Atlanta has, and overpayment doesn’t sound like an issue.

Posted by Alan from Atlanta on 02/15/11 at 11:53 PM ET

Luongo-is-my-hero's avatar

To many it would appear cap space is not an issue, with Atlanta having a ton of it available.  Problem is, they don’t spent to the cap max, and actually hover around the cap minimum.  Currently they are hovering around 41 million in cap space being used, which is 18 under the cap maximum.  Next year they will be at 35 million but with 10 roster spots to fill.  That is including Buffys salary as well, so we can assume that if history is any indication, they have approx 5-7 million to spend to fill 10 roster spots. 

Unless ownership wants to suddenly spend another 18-20 million, overpayment is still an issue

Posted by Luongo-is-my-hero on 02/16/11 at 01:38 AM ET

Primis's avatar

Consider how much cap room Atlanta has, and overpayment doesn’t sound like an issue.

Posted by Alan from Atlanta on 02/15/11 at 08:53 PM ET

  Atlanta Spirit co-owner Michael Gearon said there is now a “sense of urgency” to find additional investors or a buyer willing to keep the Thrashers in Atlanta. If the ownership group does not get additional financial help in the near future the franchise could be sold and moved to another city.

  “If we are faced with that as the only alternative, that’s what’s going to happen,” Gearon told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution in an exclusive interview Tuesday. “I don’t think there is an ability to stomach another $20 million in losses. We just can’t do it.

  “The reality is we need fans showing up and we need investors, or a primary investor.”

Doesn’t sound to me like they can spare it.

Posted by Primis on 02/16/11 at 04:07 PM ET

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