The Winnipeg Jets announced on Thursday that they have agreed to terms with goaltender Connor Hellebuyck on a six-year, $37 million contract with an average annual value of $6.167 million.
The 25-year-old goalie took part in a career-high 67 games for the Jets last season, setting single-season franchise records for wins (44), shutouts (6), and save percentage (.924), according to the information provided by the team's website. His 44 wins are the eighth most in a season in NHL history and the most by an American-born goaltender. The native of Commerce, Mich. was a finalist for the 2017-18 Vezina Trophy as the NHL's best goaltenderand was selected to the NHL's Second All-Star team.
Hellebuyck saw his first action in the Stanley Cup Playoffs this past spring, posting a 9-8 record, two shutouts, 2.36 goals-against average and .922 SV% in 17 games, as he helped the Jets reach the Western Conference Final.
In 149 career NHL regular season games, Hellebuyck has an 83-41-14 record with 12 shutouts, a 2.55 GAA, and .917 SV%. His 70 wins during the last two seasons are eighth most in the NHL.
Hellebuyck was drafted by the Jets in the fifth round, 130th overall, back in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft.
The star goalie had filed for arbitration last week, but the new agreement between both parties avoids any more doing in the process. Hellebuyck stood to make the biggest jump from the $2 million he made last season on a one-year deal.
There was also positive changes in between the pipes for the Jets earlier this month. Laurent Brossoit, 25, signed a one-year, one-way deal worth $650,000 at the opening of the free agency market to fill the void left in the Jets net with a previous trade of veteran Steve Mason, who was moved on the Saturday.
Hellebuyck won’t have to spend much time getting to know his new goaltending partner – the two are already good friends and off-season training partners. They also share Ray Petkau as an agent. Brossoit is also familiar with Tyler Myers and Nic Petan from off-season training and hopes to see in action in about 20 regular-season games next season.
It's been a busy offseason for the Jets, but this signing will surely take a load off their minds.