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Binnington signs six-year, $36 million contract with Blues

Goalie could have been free agent after season

by Louie Korac / Independent Correspondent

ST. LOUIS -- Jordan Binnington signed a six-year, $36 million contract with the St. Louis Blues on Thursday.

"It feels good," the 27-year-old goalie said. "It's off the mind now. I feel a couple emotions. I'm grateful and I'm very proud."

The contract has an average annual value of $6 million, a full no-trade clause for the first three years, and a limited no-trade clause for the final three years.

Binnington could have become an unrestricted free agent after the season. He is 9-6-3 with a 2.69 goals-against average and .908 save percentage in 19 games playing the final season of a two-year, $8.8 million contract ($4.4 million AAV) he signed July 13, 2019. That was one month after he set the rookie record for Stanley Cup Playoff wins, going 16-10 with a 2.46 GAA, a .914 save percentage and one shutout in 26 games to help the Blues win the Stanley Cup for the first time in their 51-season history.

"Thinking about this process, being on a competitive team was something that mattered to me and matters to me," Binnington said. "I'm not looking to kind of crush the bank. It's not all about money to me. I think at the end of the day, I think what you look back on and you feel in your heart is the memories made and competing and being successful and going through tough times and getting out of them and being there for your teammates. We've got a good, respected group here, and I'm excited."

Selected by St. Louis in the third round (No. 88) of the 2011 NHL Draft, Binnington moved up from fourth on the Blues depth chart as a rookie in 2018-19, when he was a finalist for the Calder Trophy, awarded to the player voted the NHL rookie of the year. Binnington was 24-5-1 with a 1.89 GAA, a .927 save percentage and five shutouts in 32 regular-season games (30 starts), and then signed a shorter contract rather than a long-term deal.

"Obviously signing the two-year with the option of heading to free agency, I think I still had more to prove," Binnington said. "I'm happy with how it turned out. … I wanted to keep it simple and to the point and just respect on both sides. We have a special team, a great core, a veteran group and young talent and all the above. I'm happy it worked out."

Video: Jordan Binnington signs six-year extension with Blues

Binnington is 63-24-11 with a 2.38 GAA, a .915 save percentage and eight shutouts in 102 NHL regular-season games (99 starts), and 16-15 with a 2.79 GAA, a .904 save percentage and one shutout in 31 playoff games.

"You take the championship season, that was a short window," Blues general manager Doug Armstrong said. "I don't think either side were comfortable on what the future was going to hold. He came back in last year and had a great regular season. We were the second-best team when the pandemic hit. He didn't have the playoffs that he wanted, and we didn't have the playoffs as an organization that we wanted, and he came back this year and has given us a chance to win every night. 

"Our team is a team that probably gives up a little bit more than they normally do right now just with the number of transactions that we've had with our lineup on a nightly basis. I think he's been good, and I think a six-year deal hopefully gives him another kick at the can at the end of this one too, but it probably secures he and his family moving forward."

Armstrong said he and agent Mike Liut completed the details during the Blues' three-day break that started Tuesday.

"It was something that when Mike and I talked, last week was really the first week I was on the road that I said, 'Let's take a really good swing at this if Jordan's comfortable doing that,'" Armstrong said. "And I said, 'We have Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday off, let's talk at that point.' Mike said he talked to Jordan and Jordan wanted to see if we could get something done, and if we couldn't, we were going to just table it until the year was over. Over the last three days, we talked about different things, different term lengths and things like that. Everyone became very comfortable with the contract that was there because it gives him security but it also allows us to have a good team. At 33 (when the contract ends), it allows him to sign another deal if he still so desires and has the abilities."

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