Nashville, Tenn. (August 14, 2018) - Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile announced Tuesday that the team has signed defenseman Ryan Ellis to an eight-year, $50 million contract that will see him remain in Nashville through the 2026-27 season. Ellis will earn $6.25 million per season beginning in 2019-20. He has one year remaining on the five-year, $12.5 million contract he signed on Oct. 5, 2014.
"Ryan is a huge part of our team on and off the ice and we are happy to have his leadership remain in our locker room for the foreseeable future," Poile said. "We have talked about wanting to keep the core of our team together, and this is another opportunity to help us do so, while continuing to compete for a Stanley Cup. Ryan is entering his prime and is one of the reasons why we feel this team has a chance to win every time we step on the ice."
Ellis, 27 (1/3/91), set career highs in assists (23) and plus-minus (+26 rating) last season despite playing in only 44 games due to recovery from offseason knee surgery. His +26 rating tied for fifth among all NHL blueliners and was the highest by a defenseman and second-highest overall in Predators history. Ellis posted the 11th-most points by an NHL defenseman from his season debut on Jan. 2 to the end of the campaign with 32 (9g-23a), and his nine goals were tied for the third-most in a season in his career. He also posted seven goals and 18 assists when the Predators were trailing or the game was tied and recorded two game-winning goals.
In 396 career NHL contests - all with the Predators - Ellis has tallied 55 goals and 118 assists for 173 points, the sixth-most by a defenseman in team history. Since making his NHL debut on Dec. 26, 2011, he has recorded the 11th-best plus-minus among League blueliners at +76, which also stands as the franchise high. A veteran of 58 career playoff games, Ellis sits second in Predators history in postseason assists with 22 and is tied for third in points with 27.
Originally drafted by the Predators in the first round (11th overall) of the 2009 NHL Draft, Ellis spent parts of two seasons with the American Hockey League's Milwaukee Admirals from 2011-13 before jumping to Nashville. He won two Memorial Cups, two Ontario Hockey League titles and 13 individual awards with the Windsor Spitfires from 2007-11, including the 2011 CHL Player of the Year and 2011 OHL Most Outstanding Player. When he completed his junior career, Ellis joined Rick Corriveau (329) and Denis Potvin (330) as the only defensemen in OHL history to record 300 career points (73g-241a). Internationally, Ellis is a three-time World Junior Championship medalist, helping Canada win gold in 2009 and captaining the 2011 squad that took home silver. He and the Canadians also won gold at the 2016 World Championship and the 2008 Under-18 World Championship.