The best impending free-agent defenseman isn't hitting the market.
The San Jose Sharks announced Monday that they re-signed Erik Karlsson to an eight-year contract extension. The deal is worth a reported $92 million ($11.5 million against the salary cap), according to Sportsnet's Chris Johnston:
"I'm super excited to continue my journey with the Sharks," Karlsson said in a club release. "Since my first day here, I have only good things to say about the people, organization, and the fans. The entire Bay Area has been extremely welcoming to me and my family. I appreciate that and we can't wait to spend the next eight years in San Jose."
The 2018-19 season was Karlsson's first in the Bay Area after a September trade from Ottawa, and the Swede finished with three goals and 45 points in 53 games. He added two goals and 16 points during San Jose's run to the conference finals.
"As far as hockey goes, I'm excited to continue the chase for the ultimate prize: the Stanley Cup," Karlsson added. "Last year was an unbelievable run but we didn't achieve what we set out to do. But the dedication I witnessed from my teammates, coaches, staff and organization showed me that we all have a great future ahead of us, and that we are capable of fighting for that championship year in and year out."
Karlsson, a two-time Norris Trophy winner, earned $6.5 million against the salary cap last season, the final year on his deal. He remains one of the league's top puck-moving defensemen and would have been in high demand in free agency, which opens July 1.