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Brayden Schenn out to 'prove myself'

Flyers forward avoids arbitration, agrees to terms on four-year contract following career season

by Adam Kimelman @NHLAdamK / NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

Philadelphia Flyers forward Brayden Schenn was waiting in the hearing room for his arbitration case in Toronto on Monday morning knowing one of two things was going to happen in the next few minutes.

Either his representatives were going to come in for the start of the hearing, or he was going to leave the room because an agreement had been reached. 

Schenn, 24, and the Flyers were happy it was the latter; the sides agreed to terms on a four-year contract. Financial terms were not disclosed, but the contract has an average annual value of $5.125 million, according to TSN.

"I was already sitting in the room, just a matter of my agents were talking to [Flyers general manager Ron Hextall] outside," Schenn said Monday. "It was a matter of if they were coming in the room or I was coming out and a deal was going to be done. Just extremely happy to be signed on for another four years."

Video: Brayden Schenn on signing four-year contract

Hextall said the hearing was scheduled to start at 9 a.m. ET, but the sides began talking on their way into the hearing room and got permission to take things further.

"We had talked prior on our way in," Hextall said. "We got into a pretty good conversation and we ended up settling at 9:45 [a.m.]. Hearing was supposed to start at 9 o'clock. [The arbitrator] was patient with us and allowed us time to get the deal done."

Schenn had NHL career highs of 26 goals, 33 assists and 59 points in 80 games last season. Schenn also had five game-winning goals (tied for the Flyers lead), 11 power-play goals (second) and 22 power-play points (tied for third). He also had two points and a Flyers-best plus-2 rating in six games against the Washington Capitals in the Eastern Conference First Round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Schenn said he believes his 2015-16 output can be the norm moving forward.

"I feel like I'm getting better year by year and I expect nothing else next year," he said. "… I expect to come in and continue to prove my game in all areas of the ice. When you get the chance to play with good players they make you better as well. We got some good pieces that are part of the Flyers. We have a good team moving forward here. You want to get better individually, but I think the team as a whole will be better this year as well."

Video: Brayden Schenn on signing a four-year contract

In seven seasons with the Flyers and Los Angeles Kings, Schenn has 84 goals, 193 points and 179 penalty minutes in 354 regular-season games. In the past three seasons, he is one of 10 forwards 25 or younger with at least 18 goals and 40 points in each season, according to Hockey-Reference.com.

"Brayden is a very good young player who has continued to get better and we hope he continues to get better," Hextall said. "… The good thing for us and Brayden is he's gotten better every year. He's a hard worker and he's starting to figure out some of the little intricacies of the game. He had his best year to this point this past season so hopefully he continues to build on that. I believe he will."

Schenn said he's happy to be staying with the Flyers for the next four years.

"I have to be counted on each night and I feel like I'm part of the core group," he said. "There's a bunch of us that have been there for a while now, and to be signed on for another four years, it obviously shows their confidence in me as a player. Now it's for me to me to go out there and continue to prove myself and try to grow my game."

Schenn is the second Flyers player to settle before going to arbitration; Philadelphia agreed to terms with Jordan Weal on a new contract July 11 and has an arbitration hearing scheduled with defenseman Brandon Manning on Aug. 2.

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