December 6, 2013 Sections
Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION
The Winnipeg Jets have locked up their last of their ‘Big Three’ restricted free agents as defenceman Zach Bogosian has signed a new seven-year contract worth $36 million.
"I’ve made it clear since my first time being in Winnipeg that it’s a place I’ve wanted to be a for a long time," Bogosian said Monday in a conference call.
"I’m just real happy that Winnipeg believed in me and gave me another chance to prove myself… I didn’t exactly have the best start to my career in Atlanta and obviously moving up to Winnipeg gave me a new chance to play in a hockey market and play in a hockey town. That’s where the term came in, it was definitely a no-brainer for me to want to stay there for a long time."
The 22-year-old Massena, NY product has played in 297 career NHL games, including 33 games with the Jets last season in which he recorded 14 points (5G, 9A).
Bogosian, drafted third overall in 2008 by Atlanta, was the last of the significant restricted free agents who had filed for arbitration, including Blake Wheeler and Bryan Little, but all three signed before a hearing with the arbitrator.
"I was really happy to see the rest of the guys get locked up long term," said Bogosian, who will attend the U.S. Olympic orientation camp next month.
"We’ve been talking over the course of the summer to see how things were going. I’m just really excited to be there for the next seven years. I’m extremely happy about it.
"Signing the guys that we did and getting the guys we did in free agency is obviously going to help. Every year we sit down and talk about our goals. Winning a championship and bringing the cup to Winnipeg would be the No. 1 thing. Moving forward, we’re a better team right now. I’m just very excited to be there for the next seven years. It’s felt like home since I got there last year and I can’t say enough about how the Jets organization runs things… it’s first class there."
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Updated on Monday, July 29, 2013 at 4:46 PM CDT:
Adds commentary from Bogosian.