Blue Jackets agree to terms on a 3-year, $12 million contract with Ryan Johansen
It's finally over. Two occasionally warring sides have ended their long, frosty contract negotiations by striking an 11th-hour deal:
TSN's Bob McKenzie has the contract details:
Johansen's new contract will take the 22-year-old first-line center to within one season of unrestricted free agency. When his contract expires he'll have arbitration rights, which should preclude a long, occasionally bitter standoff like the one that characterized the Blue Jackets' offseason.
He'll also be enormously expensive to qualify:
So in order to retain Johansen's RFA rights in the summer of 2017, the Blue Jackets will have to tender him a qualifying offer, which will be the equivalent of a one-year, $6-million contract. That's a generous enough number that Johansen might reasonably accept it, with an eye on earning himself a lucrative long-term deal as an unrestricted free agent the next summer.
The 6-foot-3, near-230 pound center scored 30 goals and totaled 60 points during the 2013-14 campaign. Johansen's sudden and percentage-driven star turn in the final year of his entry-level deal made his value difficult to peg, which likely contributed to the long, tense negotiations between the Blue Jackets and their best skater.