Scratch Corey Perry's name from the list of potential unrestricted free agents this summer. The 2011 Hart Memorial Trophy winner came to terms on a new eight-year contract worth $69-million (U.S.) with the Anaheim Ducks on Monday night.
Perry became the second key Ducks player to sign a contract for the maximum term, after centre Ryan Getzlaf did the same earlier this month.
The signing is good news for the Ducks, who have the second-best record in the NHL thus far this season, and bad news for any teams – Toronto Maple Leafs, Detroit Red Wings – which had entertained hopes he might leave Anaheim.
Sources put the average annual value of the contract at $8.625-million, which is slightly more than the $8.25-million Getzlaf will earn. It is a significant financial commitment for a team that was in the bottom third of the NHL in payroll this season ($56.15-million).
In a statement, Ducks general manager Bob Murray said Perry, like Getzlaf, "wanted to stay in Anaheim and be part of our organization long-term. He is an exceptional player who competes with heart and soul and has won at every level."
Perry has 24 points in 25 games this season, but cracked the 50-goal barrier just two years ago, when he won the NHL most valuable player award over Vancouver Canucks forward Daniel Sedin.
The three-time NHL all-star (2008, 2011, 2012) has scored 96 goals since the start of the 2010-11 season, second only to Steven Stamkos of the Tampa Bay Lightning.
"Staying in Anaheim has always been my first choice," Perry said. "This is a great place to play, and I'm very grateful to have the opportunity to remain here.