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Flames still working on Gaudreau contract

by Staff Writer / Calgary Flames

CALGARY, AB -- The Calgary Flames are confident they'll reach an agreement with restricted free agent forward Johnny Gaudreau, according to general manager Brad Treliving.

Gaudreau, 23, led the Flames with 30 goals and 78 points last season. Calgary signed Gaudreau's linemate, center Sean Monahan, 21, to a seven-year contract Friday. Financial terms were not released, but Sportsnet reported the total to be $44.625 million, for an average annual value of $6.375 million.

"I think there's some uniqueness when you have two young players like this, relatively the same age, coming out at the same time," Treliving said. "Is there uniqueness? Sure there is. Does one impact the other? There's a marketplace. We'll continue to work away. That's all you do. You pick away at it every little day. You try to find common ground.

"We know Johnny is an important guy, as all our players are. He's a terrific young player. He wants to be here. We want him here. You keep working away at it. We have every confidence that we're going to find a deal that's fair and works on both sides."

As linemates the past two seasons, Gaudreau and Monahan have combined for 112 goals and 267 points.

Gaudreau and Monahan will play for Team North America in the World Cup of Hockey 2016, which will be played at Air Canada Centre in Toronto from Sept. 17 to Oct. 1. Gaudreau will play even if he doesn't have an NHL contract.

"It takes time," Monahan said. "I'm positive he's going to be here for Oct. 12 [regular-season opener at the Edmonton Oilers] and be playing for the Calgary Flames. I'm not worried about it. Brad is doing his work on that part. I'm just looking forward to getting off to the World Cup and playing with him there, and continue that chemistry into the season."

Monahan said he doesn't have any inside information on negotiations with Gaudreau. Their off-season conversations have not included contract discussions.

"To be honest, we don't really talk about it," Monahan said. "We both have different agents and we're just friends and teammates. That's the business side of it. We didn't get into too much detail about it. We just talk about regular things we'd normally talk about. I'm just happy my deal's done. Hopefully Johnny can get done soon and we'll get back on the ice together.

"He's an important piece of the team. He's a great player. He's one of my best friends. I'm sure he's going to get done soon. I'm looking forward to that."

Gaudreau was selected in the fourth round (No. 104) of the 2011 NHL Draft. As a rookie in 2014-15, he had 24 goals and 64 points in 80 games and was third in voting for the Calder Trophy. He's also played in the past two NHL All-Star Games.

"We're continuing to work at it," Treliving said. "We'll continue to work on Johnny. He's another important player and a good young player for us. As with Sean, I'm confident we'll get to the finish line at some point there and have a deal that works for everyone."

Author: Aaron Vickers | Correspondent

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