X

Evgeni Malkin, Penguins Agree to 4-Year Contract with $6.1M AAV

Erin WalshJuly 13, 2022

AP Photo/Keith Srakocic

The Penguins and veteran forward Evgeni Malkin have agreed to a four-year, $24.4 million deal that will keep him in Pittsburgh through the 2025-26 season, the team announced Tuesday.

"Evgeni is a generational talent who will be remembered as one of the greatest players in NHL history," said general manager Ron Hextall. "His hockey resume and individual accomplishments speak volumes about him as a player, and we are thrilled to watch him continue his remarkable legacy in Pittsburgh."

The deal comes as no surprise as Malkin offered to take a pay cut of $20 million over three years to remain in Pittsburgh, according to Mark Madden of TribLive. His eight-year, $76 million deal expired after the 2021-22 campaign, and he was set to enter free agency on Wednesday had he not reached a deal with the Pens.

That said, there was some doubt the veteran would remain in Pittsburgh after his close friends and teammates told The Athletic's Rob Rossi that he was "devastated" by the lack of progress on an extension last week.

"He wants to play only in Pittsburgh," one of Malkin's friends told Rossi at the time. "He doesn't understand how it's at this point with him not being signed. He's said, 'They don't think I'm a good player—why?'"

ESPN's Greg Wyshynski also reported that Malkin was set to test free agency after he and the Penguins remained at an impasse in contract negotiations.

The 35-year-old has spent his entire 16-year career with the Penguins, which selected him second overall in the 2004 NHL draft. He has racked up 444 goals and 702 assists for 1,146 points in 981 regular-season games.

Malkin is a three-time All-Star, two-time Art Ross winner, the 2011-12 Hart Trophy winner and 2011-12 Pearson Award winner. He has also been a significant playoff performer for the Pens, tallying 67 goals and 113 assists for 180 points in 177 games.

While Malkin missed time because of injury during the 2021-22 campaign, the Russian still tallied 20 goals and 22 assists for 42 points in 41 games. It was an improvement from the season prior in which he tallied just eight goals and 20 assists in 33 games.

Malkin is still a serviceable forward, and it's no surprise Pittsburgh re-signed him for another four seasons. He has helped the Penguins win three Stanley Cups and been instrumental to their success over the years.

🚨 SPORTS NEWS ➡️ YOUR INBOX

The latest in the sports world, emailed daily.