The Malik Report
by George Malik on 03/14/13 at 03:51 AM ET
Via RedWingsFeed, MLive's Ansar Khan has postedan article that's made staying up late to cover the Red Wings' West Coast swing worth it, even after enduring that crappy-ass loss to Calgary. He's reporting that the Wings hammering out the details of a contract extension for Jimmy Howard...
A source told MLive.com that the sides are inching closer to agreeing on a deal that would more than double Howard's current $2.25 million salary to the $5 million-a-year range. It is expected to be for at least six or seven years.
Getting their workhorse goaltender signed was the Red Wings' top priority. Playing behind a defense that lost Nicklas Lidstrom and Brad Stuart in the offseason and has been riddled by injuries, Howard arguably has been the club's most valuable player. He is 10-7-4, with a 2.46 goals-against average and .914 save percentage.
Howard, who turns 29 on March 26, averaged 36 wins for three seasons after assuming the starting role in 2009-10, when he finished second in Calder Trophy balloting to Buffalo Sabres defenseman Tyler Myers.
And he has news about Valtteri Filppula (asking quite a bit) and Damien Brunner (no comparables as of yet), too:
The Red Wings are optimistic they can find common ground with Brunner, but they aren't anywhere close to signing Filppula, who is believed to seeking a contract worth more than $5 million a season.
The Red Wings have had numerous conversations with Brunner's agent. The problem is determining his market value with so little sample size. Brunner's base salary this year is $925,000, with the potential to earn $517,500 in bonuses (all prorated due to the lockout).
Brunner led the top Swiss league in scoring in 2011-12 and was doing the same this season when the NHL lockout ended. He scored 10 goals in his first 19 games with the Red Wings but has no goals in the past eight games.
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The Malik Report is a destination for all things Red Wings-related. I offer biased, perhaps unprofessional-at-times and verbose coverage of my favorite team, their prospects and developmental affiliates. I've joined the Kukla's Korner family with five years of blogging under my belt, and I hope you'll find almost everything you need to follow your Red Wings at a place where all opinions are created equal and we're all friends, talking about hockey and the team we love to follow.