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Burns Becomes Highest Paid Shark with New 8-Year Deal

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San Jose Sharks defenseman Brent Burns signed an eight-year, $64 million contract today, according to ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun. This makes the 31-year-old the highest paid player on the Sharks roster.

Burns was in the final year of a 5-year, $28.8 million contract and would’ve become an unrestricted free agent at the end of this season. This contract will not begin until Burns turns 32, so he will be 40-years-old at the end of his new contract.

Eight years is the maximum amount that is allowed under the current collective bargaining agreement between the NHL and NHLPA. The average annual value (AAV) of the contract is $8 million, which makes Burns the second-highest paid defenseman behind the Nashville Predators’ P.K. Subban. The contract per year breaks down like this (via Chris Johnston on Twitter [@reporterchris]):

  • 2017-2018: $7 million signing bonus (SB), $3 million salary
  •  2018-2019: $6 million SB, $4 million salary
  • 2019-2020: $5 million SB, $5 million salary
  • 2020-2021: $8 million SB, $2 million salary
  • 2021-2022: $3.5 million SB, $4 million salary
  • 2022-2023: $3.5 million SB, $3 million salary
  • 2023-2024 and 2024-2025: $2 million SB, $3 million salary

Burns has continued to build off last season, which saw him put up 75 points in the regular season, be a point-per-game player (24 points in 24 games) during the Sharks run to the Stanley Cup Final, and become a Norris Trophy finalist. So far this season, Burns has 16 points through 19 games, and is tied with Montreal Canadiens defenseman Shea Weber for most goals by a defenseman with seven.

This was a big signing for the Sharks as they have a big offseason ahead of them this summer. Both Joe Thornton and Patrick Marleau are scheduled to be unrestricted free agents as well, and both may seek a lot of money as each player will most likely be signing the final contracts of their respective careers.

The Sharks acquired Burns during the 2011 NHL Entry Draft in a trade with the Minnesota Wild. The deal saw Burns and a 2012 second-round pick go to the Sharks in exchange for Devin Setoguchi, Charlie Coyle, and a 2011 first-round pick.

The two-time All-Star has 439 points in 816 career NHL games, with 256 of the points and 363 of the games played coming during his time in San Jose.