OTTAWA - The Ottawa Senators announced today that the team has agreed to terms with forward Drake Batherson on a six-year, $29.85M contract. The contract has an average annual value of $4.975 million and includes the following breakdown: $2.5M in 2021-22, $3.5M in 2022-23, $5.4M in 2023-24, $5.4M in 2024-25, $6.5M in 2025-26 and $6.55M in 2026-27.
Batherson, 23, spent the entirety of the season in the NHL for the first time in 2020-21 and ranked fourth among Senators in scoring with 34 points (17 goals, 17 assists) while accruing eight penalty minutes and skating in each of the team's 56 regular-season games. His 17 goals tied for the club's second highest total.
"Drake represents an integral component of our future at forward," said Senators general manager Pierre Dorion. "Dating to his first pro season, he has steadily progressed to the point where he is now widely recognized as a bonafide top line NHL winger. He possesses a strong ability to play at both ends of the ice, is a key powerplay contributor and someone we expect to be a prominent player for us for several years to come."
A long-time resident of Nova Scotia following his birth in Fort Wayne, Ind., Batherson is scheduled to appear in the 100th game of his NHL career when Ottawa opens its 2021-22 season on Thursday, Oct. 14 against Toronto at Canadian Tire Centre. Over his first 99 career contests, he has registered 53 points (23 goals, 30 assists) and 27 penalty minutes. He has also tallied 116 points (38 goals, 78 assists) and 63 penalty minutes over 105 career American Hockey League games with the Belleville Senators.
Internationally, Batherson helped Team Canada earn a gold medal by leading Canadians in goals (seven) over seven contests at the 2018 IIHF World Junior Championship in Buffalo, N.Y.
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