Jets sign Scheifele, Hellebuyck to matching 7-year, $59.5M extensions

Jets sign Scheifele, Hellebuyck to matching 7-year, $59.5M extensions

The Winnipeg Jets announced matching seven-year, $59.5-million extensions for stars Mark Scheifele and Connor Hellebuyck on Monday.

Both players were set to enter the upcoming season on expiring contracts. Their new deals carry $8.5 million average annual values and run through 2031.

Scheifele and Hellebuyck were commonly discussed as potential trade candidates throughout the summer and for the 2023-24 deadline if new deals weren’t struck. In June, it was reported that Hellebuyck wasn’t interested in signing an extension with the club.

However, prior to training camp opening in September, general manager Kevin Cheveldayoff said the club’s “singular focus” was winning with Scheifele and Hellebuyck in the fold.

Scheifele was the Jets’ first draft pick after the team relocated from Atlanta in 2011. He ranks third on the club’s all-time games played list (723) while sitting second in goals (272) and points (645). The 30-year-old produced a career-high 42 goals in 68 games in 2022-23.

“I think it was really important, you know, to be a Jet for the next eight years,” Scheifele said, per NHL.com’s Jamie Thomas. “I think I’m going to be 39 when (the new deal expires). So, to call myself a Jet for life, it’s an honor, really. Because not many guys get the opportunity to actually do that and be on one team their entire career.”

Hellebuyck established himself as one of the league’s top netminders since taking over the starting job in 2016-17. He owns a lifetime .916 save percentage and has been a Vezina Trophy finalist three times, winning the award in 2020.

His new contract carries the fourth-highest salary among goaltenders, behind Carey Price ($10.5 million), Sergei Bobrovsky ($10 million), and Andrei Vasilevskiy ($9.5 million).

The Jets begin their 2023-24 season Wednesday against the Calgary Flames.

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