David Pastrnak is very good at hockey.
In the Bruins 3-2 overtime win in Dallas on Tuesday night, Pastrnak netted his 39th goal of the season to clinch the victory. He also chipped in an assist to raise his point total to 74 in just 53 games. Pasta is 2nd in the league in goal scoring and 5th overall in points, but most importantly in the eyes of Bruins fans he’s on an expiring contract.
This has been a point of angst for all in the organization and fanbase, as rumors have been flying around nonstop since the season started.
Most reports have been positive, but the consistency has been all over the place. On New Year’s Eve Rich Keefe of WEEI tweeted that an 8 Year $88 million deal was imminent, to no avail. Last week, Emily Kaplan of ESPN wrote that contract talks have been “financially very close” but nothing more concrete.
Pastrnak is currently in the final season of a 6 Year $40 million deal signed prior to the 2017-18 season. Throughout the contract he’s been one of the league’s best forwards, scoring 220 goals and 455 points in 391 games. If not for the pandemic cutting the 2019-20 season short, he would’ve eclipsed the 50 goal and 100 point marks. He has also been over a point per game (70) in 64 playoff games during that time. All the while being the best bargain in hockey at $6.67m on the cap.
In all likelihood, Pasta’s next contract will reset the winger market.
Boston will have the luxury of tacking on an eighth year, driving up the total value even more. Any new deal will exceed the prices Matthew Tkachuk and Jonathan Huberdeau set the mark last year. Each signed eight year extensions upon being traded for one another, with Tkachuk signing for $76m and Huberdeau getting $84m.
The last thing Boston fans would want is for Pastrnak to become another homegrown star to leave in his prime.
Photo: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports