— Jean-Gabriel Pageau (@JGPageau) June 18, 2015
After the Senators’ official Twitter account teased fans with an impending free agent signing, Jean-Gabriel Pageau could not help from breaking the news himself.
So what we know is that Pageau has inked a two-year deal that will pay him $700,000 in the first year of his contract and $1,000,000 in the second year for an average annual value of $900,000. It’s almost a staggeringly low figure for a player who helped stabilize the team’s bottom six by playing on an effective puck possession line with Erik Condra and Curtis Lazar. (As an aside, if you’re reading this JG, you should probably fire your agent. Mark Borowiecki played 21 games in the NHL before inking his current contract and he’s breaking the bank more than you are. That’s silly. Your guy got taken to the woodshed.)
In 50 games last season, Pageau chipped in with 10 goals and 19 points. Not only was he a positive possession player (51.79 CF% at 5v5), relative to the minutes he played, he had the exact same Pts/60 rate as Mika Zibanejad (1.63). Again, for a guy who’s playing with Lazar — a rookie who struggled offensively in his first season — and Condra — a guy who’s renowned for not cashing in often enough relative to the scoring chances he creates — it’s pretty damn impressive.
From the team perspective, it’s fantastic to see the player sign a ridiculous team-friendly contract that carries such a low cap hit. Put in perspective, I assumed the money on Pageau’s next contract would have resembled something similar to what Zack Smith pulled in following his 2012-13 season, but hey, I’m not complaining as a fan… well, except if the extra money being throw around is wasted on expendable veterans whose most redeeming quality belongs to their “name value”.
As I joked on Twitter yesterday, my favourite part about Pageau’s contract isn’t he fact that it’s a one-way deal. It’s that it contains a little used stipulation that prevents him from being boxed out of a job by shittier players on bad contracts who cannot be moved.
Great job management. Fleece Mark Stone, Mika Zibanejad and Mike Hoffman for your next trick.