Sometimes, a hockey player wanted a fresh start and only a new team could satisfy it. This happened to Dougie Hamilton who had just transferred to another team despite the previous contract offer of his former team, the Boston Bruins.
Three days after getting dealt from the Bruins to the Calgary Flames for three draft picks, restricted free-agent defenseman Hamilton agreed to a contract extension with his new team.
The Flames officially welcomed the 22-year-old Canadian national into the organization with a brand new multi-year deal.
The two sides came to an agreement on Tuesday, a pact reportedly worth six-years and $34.5-million with an average annual value of $5.75-million.
However, the parameters of the deal came as somewhat of a surprise as the Bruins reportedly offered nearly as much money on a per-year basis, according to Sportsnet‘s Elliotte Friedman. Unfortunately, they didn’t reach an agreement regarding the deal.
Boston reportedly offered him $5.5 AAV, while the Calgary offered him $5.7. It just proved that the defenseman wanted to start anew with Flames, not with the Black and Gold anymore.
Well, apparently, Hamilton’s salary is the highest AAV on the Flames roster.
Earlier this week, Flames general manager Brad Treliving indicated the contract of the former Bruins defenseman was a priority. On Monday, Treliving extended qualifying offers to Hamilton and 11 other restricted free agents including Lance Bouma, Josh Jooris, and Micheal Ferland.
Hamilton, the ninth overall selection in the 2011 NHL draft, had been part of a trade with the Boston Bruins on June 26 which saw Calgary’s first-round selection and another two second-round picks at the 2015 NHL draft.
Playing quality minutes with Zdeno Chara, Hamilton averaged the third highest ice-time on the team (21:20 per game) last season and finished sixth in team scoring with 10 goals and 32 assists. During the 2013-14 campaign, the 22-year-old former Niagara IceDog and native of Toronto had seven goals and 18 assists and added two goals and five assists during 12 playoff games.
He was undoubtedly Boston’s best offensive defenseman and was emerging as the club’s best overall rearguard with the aging Chara on the decline. He figured to be one of the Bruins’ key players for many years to come, but general manager Sweeney ultimately called Hamilton’s apparent financial bluff.
We can’t blame Calgary for pursuing Dougie because he is definitely a key ice player. Now that he’s with the Flames, expect that he will also be the team’s best defenseman. But for now, let’s see what he has got for his new squad.