Posts Tagged ‘Nathan MacKinnon’

Nathan MacKinnon is staying in Colorado for the long haul.

The Avalanche inked the superstar center to an eight-year contract extension Tuesday.

MacKinnon’s new deal carries an average annual value of $12.6 million, reports Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman. Colorado will pay approximately 85% of the agreement ($85.34 million of $100.8 million) in signing bonuses, according to TSN’s Pierre LeBrun.

The pact will make MacKinnon the highest-paid NHL player when it begins in 2023-24. Edmonton Oilers dynamo Connor McDavid currently holds that distinction with a contract carrying a $12.5-million AAV. McDavid signed his eight-year deal in 2017.

MacKinnon’s cap hit will double next season; he’s entering the final year of his current contract at a $6.3-million AAV. He said last week he wanted to get an extension done before the start of the 2022-23 season.

The 27-year-old has long been arguably the most underpaid player in the league and one of the best players of his era. He helped the Avalanche win their first Stanley Cup championship since 2001 this past June, tying for the postseason lead with 13 goals while adding 11 assists in 20 playoff games.

MacKinnon has been a Hart Trophy finalist in three of the last five campaigns. He narrowly lost the honor to Taylor Hall in 2018, finishing only 70 votes behind Hall out of over 4,000. The Nova Scotia-born pivot also lost to Oilers center Leon Draisaitl by 147 votes in 2020.

No player from the 2013 draft has more goals, assists, or points than MacKinnon since entering the league. He ranks third behind McDavid and Draisaitl in total points since 2017-18, with 442 in 338 contests during that span.

MacKinnon’s 32 goals and 88 points over 65 regular-season games last year both ranked second on the club behind Mikko Rantanen, who tallied 36 markers and 92 points in 75 contests.

The Avalanche star has totaled 242 goals and 406 assists across 638 regular-season games, adding 41 goals and 52 assists in 70 playoff contests. He’s played all nine of his NHL seasons with Colorado after the team drafted him first overall.

Nathan MacKinnon is optimistic that he’s on the verge of inking a long-term extension with the Colorado Avalanche.

“It should be done shortly, I’m hoping,” MacKinnon said Thursday, per Sportsnet’s Luke Fox. “I love Joe (Sakic, president of hockey operations) and C-Mac (general manager Chris MacFarland). Those guys are great. It’s just a little business.”

MacKinnon became eligible to sign an extension this offseason. He thought he might have reached an agreement earlier in the summer, but he is now aiming to sign before the puck drops in October.

“I’d prefer it to be done,” he said, according to Daily Faceoff’s Matt Larkin. “I just don’t want to talk about it at all, and if it’s not done (before the season) I probably will stop talking to them until after the season.

“I know it’s a cliché thing, but it’s tough, it gets emotional, you feel like it gets personal sometimes, so I’d like to get it done so it’s not a distraction.”

The 27-year-old has a realistic case to usurp Connor McDavid‘s league-high $12.5-million average annual value, but he isn’t banking on that.

“You have to ask (agent) Pat (Brisson),” MacKinnon said, per Fox.

MacKinnon did say his new deal’s annual value won’t be in the single digits, according to Larkin.

Brisson weighed in on the negotiations a couple of hours later.

“We’ve been having ongoing discussions for a couple months now, and recently, the talks have been more progressive but still a lot to cover and nothing to report,” he said, per TSN’s Pierre LeBrun.

MacKinnon has earned $6.3 million per year since 2016-17. Since then, he’s managed 495 points in 420 regular-season games while adding 83 in 63 playoff contests. He won the Stanley Cup this past season. He’s a three-time Hart Trophy finalist and he won the Lady Byng Trophy in 2020.

The highest-paid players on the Avalanche are currently Mikko Rantanen ($9.25 million) and Cale Makar ($9 million). Colorado has $56 million committed to its 2023-24 team with a roster size of 12, according to CapFriendly.

Colorado Avalanche superstar Nathan MacKinnon will miss “give or take three weeks” due to a lower-body injury, head coach Jared Bednar said Wednesday.

MacKinnon was hurt in Saturday’s game against the Columbus Blue Jackets. It remains unclear how exactly he suffered the ailment.

The 26-year-old has recorded a goal and nine assists in eight contests this season. He missed the opening two games of the campaign due to COVID-19.

J.T. Compher is projected to take MacKinnon’s place on the top line between Gabriel Landeskog and Mikko Rantanen. Here was the rest of the team’s lineup at Wednesday’s practice:

MacKinnon’s absence comes just when the Avs were on the verge of becoming fully healthy.

Devon Toews made his season debut Saturday after undergoing shoulder surgery in the summer. His defense partner, Cale Makar, missed the last two games due to an upper-body injury and is nearing a return, as is forward Valeri Nichushkin, who hasn’t played since the season opener.

The Avalanche have had bad luck with injuries and COVID-19 absences this season. In addition to the aforementioned issues, Landeskog, Rantanen, and Samuel Girard have all missed multiple games. Backup goalie Pavel Francouz also has yet to appear in a game due to an ankle injury.

The reigning Presidents’ Trophy winners are off to an uneven 4-5-1 start.

Edmonton Oilers center Connor McDavidToronto Maple Leafs center Auston Matthews, and Colorado Avalanche center Nathan MacKinnon are the three finalists for the Hart Trophy, awarded to the league’s most valuable player.

McDavid is the clear front-runner for the award after producing an NHL-best 105 points in 56 games – 21 more points than the person with the next most in the league, his teammate Leon Draisaitl. McDavid played at a 154-point pace over 82 contests, a number that hasn’t been reached since Mario Lemieux racked up 161 in 1995-96. The 24-year-old’s seeking his second career Hart Trophy after winning in 2016-17.

Matthews has already claimed the Maurice “Rocket” Richard Trophy after leading the league with 41 goals in 52 games. The 23-year-old also led the NHL with 31 even-strength goals, 12 game-winning goals, and 222 shots. The 6-foot-3, 223-pound pivot also made strides defensively, finishing with a career-best 1.95 expected goals against per 60 minutes. This is Matthews’ first time being nominated for the Hart.

MacKinnon got off to a slow start but still finished with 65 points in 48 games, ranking fourth in the league in points-per-game. The 25-year-old was the driving force behind the NHL’s top regular-season team, with his 63.7% expected goals share leading all skaters who logged at least 500 minutes at five-on-five. MacKinnon was nominated for the Hart on two other occasions, finishing as the runner-up in 2017-18 and 2019-20.

Colorado Avalanche defenseman Cale Makar is unavailable for Sunday’s clash against the Vegas Golden Knights and is day-to-day with an upper-body injury, Avalanche head coach Jared Bednar confirmed to The Athletic’s Peter Baugh.

Sunday’s game is Colorado’s first since Feb. 2, as the club has dealt with a series of postponements due to COVID-19 protocols.

While Makar’s absence is significant, the Avalanche will have No. 1 center Nathan MacKinnon back in the lineup. The 25-year-old was originally considered week-to-week with a lower-body injury but only missed one game before Colorado’s schedule came to a halt.

Makar, 22, has been sensational in his sophomore season, racking up 12 points in 11 games while logging over 24 minutes of ice time per contest. The reigning Calder Trophy winner has firmly established himself as a Norris candidate early in the 2020-21 season.

Here is Colorado’s projected lineup for Sunday:

The Avalanche are 7-3-1 on the season and sit third in the West Division. They have one game in hand on second-place Vegas and four games in hand on the division-leading St. Louis Blues.

Colorado Avalanche superstar Nathan MacKinnon is week-to-week with a lower-body injury, head coach Jared Bednar said Tuesday, according to The Athletic’s Peter Baugh.

MacKinnon left Sunday’s loss to the Minnesota Wild after playing the first two periods. It’s unclear when he suffered the injury.

The 25-year-old ranks third in the NHL with 12 assists and is tied for third with 14 points in 10 games. He finished second in Hart Trophy voting last season and was the runner-up in 2018.

The Avalanche are dealing with a slew of injuries, much as they did in 2019-20. Bednar said Tuesday that forwards Matt Calvert and Pierre-Edouard Bellemare, defensemen Erik Johnson and Devon Toews, and goaltender Pavel Francouz are all week-to-week as well.

MacKinnon played all but one of Colorado’s 70 games last season, racking up 35 goals and 58 assists. His linemates, Mikko Rantanen and Gabriel Landeskog, missed 16 and 28 contests, respectively, and netminder Philipp Grubauer was limited to 36 games.

The Avalanche are tied with the St. Louis Blues for first in the West Division, though the Blues have a game in hand.

Colorado Avalanche superstar Nathan MacKinnon is the 2019-20 winner of the Lady Byng Trophy, the league announced.

The award is “given annually to the NHL player who best combines sportsmanship, gentlemanly conduct, and ability.” It’s voted on by the Professional Hockey Writers Association.

Toronto Maple Leafs sniper Auston Matthews and St. Louis Blues center Ryan O’Reilly were the other finalists.

The 25-year-old is the third Avalanche player in franchise history to take home the award, joining Joe Sakic and O’Reilly.

MacKinnon finished the season fifth in league scoring with 95 points, and collected just 12 penalty minutes. He is the third player in the last 20 years to register over 90 points with 12 or fewer penalty minutes, joining Aleksander Barkov and Martin St. Louis.

The Nova Scotia native is also a finalist for this season’s Hart Trophy.

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Nathan MacKinnon has been on a mission this postseason.

With his first-period goal on Monday night against the Dallas Stars, the Colorado Avalanche superstar extended his point streak to 13 games to open the playoffs, putting him in some elite company.

Only three players in NHL history have put together longer point streaks to begin a postseason, and all of them are in the Hall of Fame, according to NHL Public Relations.

PLAYER YEAR STREAK
Bryan Trottier 1981 18 GP
Mark Messier 1988 14 GP
Bobby Orr 1970 14 GP

MacKinnon is also the first player to start the playoffs with a 13-game point streak since Messier did so in 1994, according to Sportsnet.

The 24-year-old entered Monday with an NHL-leading 21 playoff points – four more than second-place Elias Pettersson.

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Hart Trophy candidate Nathan MacKinnon believes the honor should go to New York Rangers superstar Artemi Panarin.

MacKinnon said Tuesday said on TSN 1050’s “Overdrive” that he tried to recruit Panarin to the Colorado Avalanche last summer before he eventually chose to go to the Big Apple. MacKinnon tried to sell him on the idea he wouldn’t have to be “the man” every night, and he even offered Panarin his spot on the power play.

“I knew he was a free agent so I was kind of watching him with Columbus. What an amazing player,” MacKinnon said. “And then I watched him all season – just from talking to him, really nice guy, so maybe I’m a little biased with that – but that’s why I think he should win the Hart this year.”

Panarin, who signed a seven-year, $81.5-million contract with the Rangers, finished tied for third in the NHL with 95 points this year, trailing only Leon Draisaitl (110), and Connor McDavid (97). He led the league with 59 points at five-on-five.

The 28-year-old led a rebuilding Rangers team to an 11th place finish in the Eastern Conference (by points percentage), which was good enough for a berth in the NHL’s expanded playoff format.

Meanwhile, the Avalanche were decimated by injuries this season, but MacKinnon still posted 93 points, 43 more than anyone else on his team. Colorado finished the season with the second-best record in the Western Conference.

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Colorado Avalanche captain Gabriel Landeskog believes teammate Nathan MacKinnon deserves to be named league MVP after another dominant showing for the 2019-20 regular season.

“I think he should be winning the Hart (Trophy) and I think he should have a couple years ago as well when he was up,” Landeskog told Sportsnet’s “Good Show” on Friday. “I know Taylor Hall had a great season, and he kind of willed his way for the Devils to go to the playoffs, but so did Nate with our group.”

MacKinnon was nominated for the Hart in 2017-18 and finished second to Hall. This year, the Avs speedster has a strong chance to be a finalist again after posting 93 points in 69 games, good for fifth in the league.

Most impressively, MacKinnon was able to put up gaudy stats despite numerous injuries to key Colorado players – Landeskog included – throughout the season. MacKinnon was by far the Avs’ most productive player, finishing 43 points clear of the team’s second-leading scorer, rookie defenseman Cale Makar.

“If you watch Nate play, he’s a difference-maker every single night,” Landeskog said. “If we’re looking for that goal, he’s usually the guy that gives it to us.”

The Avalanche managed a 42-20-8 record before the season went on pause, earning the second seed in the Western Conference and a bye in the NHL’s play-in round.