With Blake Wheeler now locked up for the next two seasons, the Jets turn their attention to 21-year-old defenseman Zach Bogosian, who just celebrated his 21st birthday on July 15th.
Unlike Wheeler, Bogosian has no arbitration rights under the Collective Bargaining Agreement. For Bogosian to qualify to file for arbitration, he would have had to play five years of professional hockey. A full season of professional hockey is reached by a younger player between 18 and 20 by playing a minimum of 10 games in a season.
As for Bogosian's worth, his entry level contract ran the Atlanta Thrashers $875,000 per year with a bonus of $1.85 million, which he reached, giving him a cap hit of $2.725 million per year.
In the last two seasons, Bogosian has been a minus player on a sub-par performing Thrasher team. He also struggled at times with the pace of the game but is still a defenseman that is learning at the professional level.
With 40 points (15 goals, 25 assists) in the past two seasons (152 games played), Bogosian may look to sign a short term deal that is in line with that of a Carey Price contract in Montreal so that he won't have the pressure of playing for too much money for his own good.
With Wheeler getting $5.1 million for two years, Bogosian may demand anywhere between $2-$3.5 million per year on a two or three year deal. (Compare to Price's deal in Montreal: two years, $5.5 million [$2.5 million (1st year), $3 million (2nd year)])
As for now, Bogosian is the last of the players GM Kevin Cheveldayoff wants to keep under wraps for the upcoming seasons.
Cheveldayoff said, “Bogosian, for me, is someone I hope to build our defence around. In this game, there are never any certainties, but what is certain is that he’s a 21-year-old defencemen who was drafted very, very high (third overall in 2008), with lots of talent."
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