Friday: The Sabres have announced the deal, confirming the three-year, $6.6MM terms.
Thursday: While most free agent news has been that impending UFA’s are intending to test the market, at least one player is set to re-sign with his current club before the market opens. Multiple sources, including TSN’s Darren Dreger, report that Zemgus Girgensons is expected to sign a contract extension with the Buffalo Sabres. Dreger expects that it will be a three-year, $6.6MM extension.
Girgensons, 26, is nothing if not consistent. The Latvian native took over a bottom-six role for the Sabres back in 2013-14 and has held tight to it ever since. In seven NHL seasons, Girgensons has played in 69+ games all but once and has always finished with 5-15 goals and 15-30 points. He plays a physical game and provides sound defensive play on a consistent basis.
Dependability like that which Girgensons provides can be hard to find, especially when adding a free agent who has never played with your team. Rather than take that risk, Buffalo has elected to go with a player they know they can trust, even if he might lack upside beyond his current level of production. At just a $2.2MM AAV, the Sabres aren’t spending much to retain a reliable asset who excels in a specific role.