Columbus Blue Jackets Sign Nathan Horton to 7-Year Deal
The team's official Twitter page broke news of the acquisition on Friday, and TSN's Bob McKenzie outlined the financial details:
Nathan Horton's deal with CBJ is 7 years, $37.1 ($5.3 AAV) but he gets $30M in first 5 years.— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) July 5, 2013
UPDATE: Friday, July 5, at 4:47 p.m. ET by Kyle Vassalo
Fluto Shinzawa of the Boston Globe provides details on Horton's shoulder surgery:
Horton will wear No. 8. Shoulder surgery will put him out 4-6 months.— Fluto Shinzawa (@GlobeFluto) July 5, 2013
---End of Update---
According to the Blue Jackets' website, a press conference will be held at approximately 4 p.m. ET to announce the signing.
As McKenzie points out, the chronic shoulder issue that Horton has dealt with will require surgery this summer, and he likely won't be able to play for his new club until December:
Nathan Horton will undergo shoulder surgery this summer. Expected to be sidelined until December.— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) July 5, 2013
That will probably force Horton out for roughly the first two months of the 2013-14 regular season.
Horton most recently played for the Boston Bruins and was a key contributor in their run to the 2013 Stanley Cup Final, where they ultimately lost to the Chicago Blackhawks in six games. The 28-year-old registered seven goals and 12 assists in 22 postseason contests.
Will Nathan Horton immediately turn around the Blue Jackets?
CBS Sports' Adam Gretz believes Boston had to clear salary-cap space to make way for contracts involving goaltender Tuukka Rask and dynamic center Patrice Bergeron.
As for the Blue Jackets, this is definitely a big splash on the open market. Not only does Horton bring some necessary star power to a historically putrid franchise, but he also has recent experience on the NHL's grandest stage to carry with him.
The Columbus faithful just have to hope that Horton's shoulder holds up well after offseason surgery so he can live up to his contract.
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