Logan Stanley is a big part of the Winnipeg Jets future, both literally and figuratively. And now the 6-7, 228-pound defenceman has earned himself a new two-year contract and a slight raise in the process.
Stanley, 23, will make US$800,000 in 2021-22, and US$1 million in 2022-23, for an average annual value of US$900,000. He was a restricted free agent this summer, coming out of his entry-level contract which paid him US$832,000 per season.
The 18th-overall pick in 2016 is coming off an impressive rookie campaign in the NHL in which he played 37 regular-season games and eight playoff games. Stanley had three goals, four assists and 30 penalty minutes, leading the Jets in plus-minus. Winnipeg was afraid of losing him in the expansion draft last month, opting to protect him and leaving defenceman Dylan DeMelo exposed. The Seattle Kraken ultimately selected forward Mason Appleton.
Winnipeg still has three remaining RFAs to sign — forward Andrew Copp and defenceman Neal Pionk with the big club, and defenceman Jonathan Kovacevic with the Manitoba Moose. Pionk and Copp have elected for salary arbitration, with hearings scheduled between Aug. 11-26 if new deals can't be reached by then.
In other Jets news on Wednesday, the team announced a series of new jersey numbers.
Forward Pierre-Luc Dubois will switch from No. 13 to No. 80 in honour of former Columbus Blue Jackets teammate Matiss Kivlenieks, who died last month in a tragic fireworks accident. Defenceman Nathan Beaulieu will move from No. 88 to No. 28. That allows Nate Schmidt, acquired last week in a trade with Vancouver, to wear his familiar No. 88.
Other new adds include defenceman Brenden Dillon wearing No. 5, forward Riley Nash No. 20, forward Austin Poganski No. 22, forward Mikey Eyssimont No. 23 and forward Luke Johnson No. 47. Poganski, Eyssimont and Johnson were all signed for depth with the Jets, but could also spend time on the farm with the Moose.
Goalie Mikhail Berdin, who is expected to be the starter for the Moose, will switch from No. 60 to No. 30.
Mike McIntyre grew up wanting to be a professional wrestler. But when that dream fizzled, he put all his brawn into becoming a professional writer.