The New York Rangers have officially re-signed defender Dan Girardi to a six-year, $33 million extension worth $5.5 million per season, according to Darren Dreger of TSN.
6 years, $5.5 per for Girardi staying with Rangers.— Darren Dreger (@DarrenDreger) February 28, 2014
The deal also comes with a limited no-movement clause, and a limited no-trade clause. Here are the full details via Katie Strang of ESPN:
#NYR Girardi's deal is 6 years, $33 million ( $5.5M AAV) with full NMC in 1st 3 yrs and a modified NTC in final 3 three years of deal— Katie Strang (@KatieStrangESPN) February 28, 2014
On the surface the deal may seem pricey when you consider that Girardi will be making more than top defender Ryan McDonagh, but when you look at all the details it is clear that the deal is a win-win for both sides.
Dan Rosen of NHL.com had this opinion of Girardi's deal on Twitter.
Reported 6yr, $33 mil for Girardi. Some will say it's too much. It's not. He's a reliable, strong, stay at home guy. Good pair w/McDonagh.— Dan Rosen (@drosennhl) February 28, 2014
The Rangers have now locked their No. 2 defender up for the next six years, and they have him on a solid contract. Salaries have been on the rise the last few years because of the increasing salary cap, and Girardi's deal will look like a steal in a few years.
The Rangers' injury-alternate captain was given a very fair deal given his age, his market value and the role he provides for the Rangers. Similar contracts via Cap Geek include Dan Hamhuis at $4.5 million, Dennis Wideman at $5.25 million and Jason Garrison at $4.6 million. These contracts were likely used as a base, and an increase was given based on Girardi's body of work.
If Girardi tested the waters of free agency, a number of teams could have offered him a deal worth $6 million or more.
He is one of the league's top shutdown defenders, and despite his rugged style of play, he is very durable. He finishes his checks, blocks shots and can also chip in 25 to 30 points a season. He also has a bomb of a shot from the point, and that can be an asset on the power play in the right setting.
In today's NHL, teams are wary when they hand out long-term contracts, but here is a look at Girardi's body of work over the last few seasons.
The Blueshirts didn't have many options, and it made more sense retaining a known commodity like Girardi instead of trying to fill the role via free agency or the trade market.
Did New York Rangers make right deal?
The top free agents this summer on the blue line include players such as Brooks Orpik, Dan Boyle, Kimmo Timonen, Sami Salo, Stephane Robidas and many other defenders on the wrong side of 30. If the Rangers wanted to, they could have tried to make a deal, but keeping Girardi was more plausible.
With uncertainty lingering about what could happen with Anton Stralman, there is still a chance the Blueshirts try to make a trade for a defender.
Having Girardi under contract means one less deal to made in July, and general manager Glen Sather can focus on other areas. This was a big deal, because this will now impact the value of other defenders at the trade deadline. Now the focus will shift to Ryan Callahan, and it will be interesting to see how that saga plays out.