The Ducks announced today that they have signed center Ryan Getzlaf to a five-year contract extension. The contract begins next season and runs through 2012-13. Per club policy, no financial terms of the deal were disclosed.
“We are extremely pleased to be able to sign Ryan to a long-term deal,” said Executive Vice President/General Manager Brian Burke. “He’s demonstrated great character and work ethic to complement his talent, a rare combination at such a young age.”
Getzlaf, 22 (5/10/85), has recorded 7-14=21 points in 19 games with the Ducks this season. Currently on a five-game point streak (3-5=8), Getzlaf leads the team in points scored and has earned 4-7=11 points in the last seven games.
Appearing in his second NHL season in 2006-07, Getzlaf notched 25-33=58 points in 82 games. One of eight Ducks to play in every regular season game, he ranked fifth on the Ducks in goals and tied for second in power play goals (11). He established single-season career highs for goals, assists, points and power play goals.
Getzlaf led the 2007 Stanley Cup Champions in postseason scoring with 7-10=17 points, setting a Ducks record for most points in a single playoff season. Among NHL postseason leaders, he finished tied for second in game-winning goals (3) and short-handed goals (1), fifth in scoring, tied for sixth in assists, and tied for fifth in power play points. He also finished tied for second on the team in goal scoring.
Originally selected in the first round (19th overall) of the 2003 NHL Entry Draft, Getzlaf made his NHL debut with the Ducks during the 2005-06 regular season. He has appeared in 158 career NHL games, scoring 46-72=118 points with a +26 rating. Getzlaf has also played in 37 career playoff games, recording 10-14=24 points. He is the only active NHL player 22-or-younger with at least 20 playoff points.
Getzlaf spoke to the media after Tuesday's practice:
I’m thrilled. This is a place that I want to play. I love being here. I was given the opportunity to negotiate a contact this early and the team showed that they wanted me here as much as I wanted to here. It was nice to get that out of the way this early.
This is an organization that’s been first-class ever since I got here, as well as the city. I’ve had a great time here and look forward to many years playing here. It’s great to be able to still be part of this core group.
When both sides want to get a deal done, it’s pretty easy to go through it. Dealing with David McNab and Burkie and them, they’re pretty fair. We were able to just talk about it and get through it.
On if he considered waiting until the summer:
No. No, not even a little bit. Obviously, that was a situation that we didn’t want to face. This is a town that’s growing right now as a hockey city. With last year’s success and the success of this organization, it was a place that I wanted to be. I didn’t want to be in a situation where I had to leave. Luckily enough, I was given that opportunity by the ownership and by Burkie and the rest of the organization.
The game’s changed a little bit over what happened last summer. You kind of have to get deals done during the year in order to keep players around as much as you can. It was just a situation where we both wanted to get a deal done. We both wanted to be here. We had an opportunity to do it this early and get it out of the way.
We looked at this as a situation that could arise, if it did go to the summer. We didn’t want it to happen. I didn’t want that. I wanted a long-term deal here and I was given the opportunity to sign that.
On whether he takes pride in staying with Ducks, who drafted him:
Yeah, I think so. I think that’s got something to do with it. I went through Junior where I played all on the same team as well. I look forward to playing here as long as I can. This is a great organization, a great city. Everything’s growing and everything’s happening so fast that it’s a situation that I wanted to be in for a long time.
On expectations associated with the deal:
It’s obviously something I wanted. The situation that we were in, I was looking to sign a long-term deal and be one of the top guys on this team. Yeah, the expectations are going to go up and they continue to grow as the years go by. That’s part of being a hockey player and growing as a player. I’m excited to have that opportunity right now.
On how long it took for the deal to get done:
It didn’t take us too long. We were both in the situation where we wanted to get a deal done. We made that pretty clear when we first came to them, that we definitely wanted to get it done as early as we could. I think everything went smooth. It only took a couple of weeks to bang out the numbers.
Later in the afternoon, Ducks Executive Vice President/General Manager Brian Burke spoke to the media via conference call from Toronto:
I’m very happy to announce today that we’ve signed Ryan Getzlaf to a contract extension. We think Ryan plays our brand of hockey, Ducks hockey, in terms of providing offense but at the same time having a physical presence, having leadership and stepping up in pressure situations, as well as being an active part of the community. These are all things that are important to us.
The Samuelis are serious about being competitive and it’s another step forward by them.
I also want to single out David McNab for praise here. Doing a contract of this scope is not easy. It’s very time consuming and very difficult. We are indeed fortunate to have David McNab on our staff.
On how much the events of last summer influenced the decision:
It changed the landscape for everybody, not just for us. I don’t like doing contracts during the season. I never have. I’ve made rare exceptions, but you’re stuck with it now.
On the threat of Getzlaf becoming a restricted free agent if a deal was not worked out:
It is a real threat for any quality player in this age group. It’s changed the rules. It used to be you could wait until the end of the year and not worry about a second-year player’s pay. Now you got to try and see if there’s a common ground to lock these guys up.
You can all dig up the quotes. I’m focused on my team now. I’m not focused on the Edmonton Oilers. You can all dig up my quotes. I stand by everything I said last summer. Nothing’s changed.
On anyone else he’s looking to lock up long-term:
We have to wait and see what Scotty (Niedermayer) does because it effects our ability to sit down with Corey Perry, but that’s certainly our next priority.
On any new developments with Scott Niedermayer:
No. My last meeting with Scotty was more than two weeks ago. He affirmed what he had said to the media before our meeting that he intended to set some kind of a deadline prior to Christmas and he would let us know at that time. As you know, we think that’s fine.
On the amount given to Getzlaf:
It is astronomical but it’s also the market. What Ryan Getzlaf has done here is accept a fair deal because he wants to stay in Anaheim. Our goal is to pay our players fairly but not to overpay them. I’m very content that this deal reflects the market for players like Ryan and Ryan’s contribution to our team. He led our team in scoring in the playoffs last year.
To me, this is an important day for our franchise. It’s important to lock of this caliber up. Again, he’s the whole package. It’s not just the scoring. This is a guy who bangs hard. He kills penalties. He plays the forward on the 5-on-3. Not too many highly skilled guys do that. He’s on the power play, so he chews up minutes. He can fight and he’s got leadership skills. And he buys into vision of community service. That’s not a small thing. If you work for the Samuelis, that’s an important part of what we do.
On Getzlaf’s ceiling:
Randy and I have said this before, and it sounds like a slap when you say this about a player. Ryan Getzlaf could be as good as he wants to be. You’re usually slapping the player when you say that. And it’s not that at all. We mean it as the highest compliment. The sky is the limit with Ryan Getzlaf. Because of the unique package to be that skilled but still be that big and have that top-end speed and have that power, we really think he can do what he wants to do in this league. So when we say that, it’s the highest compliment, not a slap. You usually say that you’re talking about an underachiever and you’re trying to get him going. That’s not the case here. I think Ryan could be as good as he wants to be here and I say that with praise. I don’t get excited about announcements like this very often. From our perspective, this is part of the job, getting players locked up. But I do think this is important today. I think he’s an important part of our future.
Now my next goal is to get Getzy to listen to better music. He sees me coming, he knows I don’t like country music. I know I’m going to get a lot of e-mails now from people who do, but he sees me coming down the hall and he cranks country music in the weight room just to aggravate me. Get him on some Beach Boys or Eagles.
On when the contract talks started:
I think the first exchange between the agent and David McNab was in training camp. It has not been a quick or easy process, but contracts of this size generally are not.
On the salary cap as it relates to this deal:
No there are issues. In this CBA, there’s a salary cap that also includes what are known as tagging issues. It’s a new term. Basically, you’ve got to have cap space in future years as well. To sign Getzy does present some tagging room issues for us, perhaps with regard to Corey Perry, but we’ll worry about that next. We’ll know more in a couple of weeks if we have a tagging issue if Scotty’s coming back or not.
I don’t know how other teams are doing, but our view in this system is we’re going to react with what we know, when we know it and then we’re going to make everything else work down the road. When we have a player tell us he’s going to retire, we replace him. We sign Mathieu Schneider, we sign Todd Bertuzzi. If a player comes back, if that presents a problem, then we’ll deal with those problems then. We’re doing as much forward planning as we can, but when we’re faced with a decision where a reaction is required on short order, we’re making that reaction in our best interest. We’ll sort out the rest of it later on.
I don’t know how else you can do it in a cap system with a competitive team. It would be one thing if our payroll was as 35. There wouldn’t be any issues. But the Samuelis want to win. It does present some issues with regard to whether we can sign Corey Perry or not. We’re going forward and we’ll worry about those once Scotty tells us what he’s going to do.