The Vancouver Canucks have signed defenseman Ben Hutton to a two-year extension worth $5.8 million.
While the Vancouver Canucks aren’t a very good team right now, they have a fairly promising future. Ben Hutton leads an impressive group of young blue liners who should be around for the future. The Canucks have signed Hutton to a two-year extension worth $2.9 million per season. He was scheduled to become a restricted free agent after this season.
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“Ben is developing into one of our young, emerging core players and is an important part of our future,” said Canucks General Manager Jim Benning, via NHL.com. “We’re excited to see him further elevate his game and help this team compete for years to come.”
The 23 year old defenseman averages over 20 minutes per game for the Canucks. He has four points through his first 20 games of the 2016-17 NHL season. Though he’s having a bit of a sophomore slump after an impressive rookie season that featured 25 points, the Canucks have struggled to score, which explains the lack of points.
Hutton has improved as far as puck possession, going from a -0.8 Corsi For relative percentage at even strength to -0.1. He was a fifth round pick of the Canucks at the 2012 NHL Draft. After a college career with the Maine Black Bears, Hutton joined Vancouver. He has played for Canada in several international tournaments, including the 2016 World Championships.
Though his season has been disappointing, Hutton’s an important part of the Canucks future. Along with Troy Stecher and Chris Tanev, his development is essential to Vancouver. He has shown impressive growth, taking on additional minutes and even some penalty killing duties this season. With the Canucks hopefully taking a more youthful approach to their team soon, Hutton should be a leader for Vancouver.
This deal works well for both sides. Hutton hasn’t shown enough to warrant a long-term deal, so this gives him the opportunity to get a bigger deal after two years.