The Colorado Avalanche today announced the re-signing of forward Matt Duchene to a five-year contract. Financial details weren’t disclosed.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: It was rumored the Avs would be offering Duchene $6 million per season, so it’ll be interesting to find out how much he actually gets. He has one season remaining on his current contract worth $3.5 million. His new deal won’t go into effect until 2014-15.
Duchene, 22, had a bounce-back performance last season, overcoming a miserable 28-point season in 2011-12 with 43 points in 47 games in 2013, one of the few highlights in an otherwise miserable season for the Avalanche. His career-best performance (so far) was his sophomore season, netting 67 points in 2010-11.
He’s earned a reputation as a skilled, swift forward who can play both center and on the wing with equal intensity. This signing squashes rumors the Avalanche could shop him to make room for recently-drafted Nathan MacKinnon and to add a top-two defenseman. Having regained his form last season, some consider Duchene the future captain of the Avs. They obviously see him as a key part of their rebuilding program.
**UPDATE** Duchene’s contract is for $30 million, or a cap hit of $6 million per season.