Arizona Coyotes sign defenseman Jakob Chychrun to 6-year extension
The Arizona Coyotes announced on Tuesday that defenseman Jakob Chychrun has agreed to a six-year contract extension.
The average annual value on Chychrun’s extension that will start next season is $4.6 million, per Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman.
“He’s almost already established himself as a top-four defenseman. I mean, look, my view of it is: sky’s the limit,” general manager John Chayka said in an interview Wednesday with Doug & Wolf on 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station. “When you’re as driven as he is, as athletically gifted as he is, and he’s got the ability he does, there’s no reason that he can’t be a top defenseman in the league.
“Obviously he’s got a long way to go, still. Unfortunately some injuries have kind of hurt his development path and he’s a little bit behind on where he could be. But at the same time, we’ve got him here for the long term and we’re expecting big things from him. A good person, good leader, and a great talent. So for us to get him signed long-term, it’s a big win for our organization. ”
The 20-year-old Chychrun started the season on injured reserve after having knee surgery in the offseason. He was expected to make his season debut on Tuesday against the Detroit Red Wings.
Chychrun is the latest Coyote to receive a long-term extension from Chayka. Captain Oliver Ekman-Larsson officially agreed to an eight-year extension in July, forward Christian Dvorak signed a six-year extension in August, defenseman Niklas Hjlamarsson agreed to a two-year pact in June and Antti Raanta agreed to a three-year deal in April.
“I think for us it was just a matter of trying to put in place some pillars to build this org’ around,” Chayka said. “Obviously we got Oliver Ekman-Larsson done on the back end, we’ve got Antti Raanta in net. To add Jakob Chychrun to the back end for the next six, seven years, that’s a big thing for us. We’ve got Nik Hjalmarsson back there, Alex Goligoski — some guys that’ve got a couple years left. But just to have that core piece for a long time was significant.”
With the extension, the Coyotes now have defensemen Chychrun, Hjalmarsson, Ekman-Larsson, Goligoski and Jason Demers all signed through at least the 2020-21 season. It also means one fewer player is on an expiring entry-level contract, while defenseman Ilya Lyubushkin, forwards Brendan Perlini and Lawson Crouse and goaltender Hunter Miska are the players currently on the Coyotes’ roster who are on ELCs that expire this offseason, per CapFriendly.
A first-round selection (16th overall) in the 2016 NHL Draft, Chychrun has 34 total points over 118 career games with the Coyotes.
“Obviously a character kid, showed a lot of passion and integrity to get back to where he is,” Chayka said. “He’s an all-world talent, elite talent, extremely driven, a good person coming from good family. So when you add it all up, he’s a guy you’d like to make sure you get for the long term of your organization, and we’re excited that we’re able to do that.”