Perhaps Don Sweeney was on to something.
The Flames poured salt on Boston’s wound Tuesday, signing Dougie Hamilton to a very team-friendly six-year deal worth $34.5 million total with an annual cap hit of $5.75 million. The signing was first reported by TSN’s Darren Dreger.
The Hamilton extension comes four days after the Bruins traded the 2011 ninth overall pick to Calgary because they felt they could not sign the player.
The numbers on the contract make the whole situation all the more interesting. Hamilton was seeking a deal similar to Drew Doughty’s eight-year contract worth $7 million annually. The Bruins’ highest offer to Hamilton was reportedly for six years and $5.5 million annually, which is very similar to what Hamilton took with the Flames.
That gives credence to Sweeney’s line Friday about how the Bruins didn’t feel Hamilton would be ‘comfortable’ in Boston.
Even if Hamilton’s preference was to play elsewhere, the Bruins can still expect criticism for receiving only picks for a player considered to be a major asset.
Boston received a first-round pick (15th overall) and two second-rounders (Nos. 45 and 52) in last week’s draft for Hamilton. While that’s a mediocre haul for a 22-year-old top defenseman who has yet to enter his prime, it is more than the B’s would have received had Hamilton signed an offer sheet for the money he got from Calgary.
Had Hamilton signed a six-year, $34.5 million deal in restricted free agency, its annual number would have been calculated by dividing the total money by five, making the number $6.9 million. That would qualify the Bruins to receive a first, second and third-round pick if they chose not to match.
Of course, teams would have had to offer more had the Bruins kept Hamilton and gone into restricted free agency. The deal Hamilton took with Calgary would have been a no-brainer to match.