McKenzie’s thoughts on Rantanen contract timeline

Deserving praise continues to pour in around the league for Mikko Rantanen, and the talented winger will clearly be cashing in on his next contract.

During a Wednesday evening NBCSN TV hit on NHL Overtime, Bob McKenzie shared his latest sentiment with a national American audience on when that deal may come.

“Well, I think in a perfect world the Colorado Avalanche would have liked to have gotten something done over the summer, or even at the beginning of this season,” noted McKenzie. “He’s got one year left on his entry-level deal, he’s a restricted free agent. Now, he had 84 points last year playing on that fantastic line with Hart Trophy candidate Nathan MacKinnon and Gabriel Landeskog. They’re off to another great start. So 84 points last year, better than a point-per-game, and going into tonight’s action he was tied for the league lead in points with 16.

“So I think the Avs, in a perfect world, would have loved to get an extension done. But I think in this case, this is a situation where the player is more likely to wait and use his final year. That’s not to say there can’t be negotiations during the season. But by the same token, it’s quite conceivable they’ll just wait until the end of the season, have the full three years of his entry-level… and, I mean, if he puts up another 80-plus point season playing on that line with MacKinnon and Landeskog, I mean it’s going to be a lot of money and that’s obviously one of the concerns of the Avalanche, who did a real nice job of getting Nathan MacKinnon on a club-friendly contract ($6.3 million) - Rantanen could be looking at some bigger numbers than that.”   

Rantanen was the 10th overall pick in the 2015 draft.

MacKinnon’s seven-year, $44.1 million contract, which carries that $6.3 million cap hit, was signed in July of 2016.

Landeskog has two seasons left on his seven-year contract after 2018-19, which includes a total value of $39 million and a cap hit a shade under $5.6 million.

Contract-related info via CapFriendly