The Jets refused to let Glendale take all the spotlight from the Winnipeg media Tuesday night, as Chevy continued his busy few days by re-signing pending UFA defenseman Grant Clitsome to a three-year, $6.2 million contract.
Since joining the Jets via the waiver wire (of course) in 2012, the best name in the NHL has played in 56 games and managed to chip in with 4 goals and 15 assists, while dancing with multiple blueline partners. Injuries opened doors for Clitsome this past season, as he was allocated time from the 6-7 spot all the way to the top pairing alongside Dustin Byfuglien while Enstrom was recovering.
With the imminent departure of Ron Hainsey the Jets needed to ensure they kept a replacement for the second pairing available, and one would think Clitsome will be that guy. That is of course unless Trouba or Redmond step in and take it for themselves. Regardless, having Clitsome’s services available increases the overall depth in the back end that the Jets (along with any team) really need. Should the mystery that is Arthurs Kulda prove to be a hidden gem, things could really get interesting as the options start to really open up.
It’s almost a certainty that people will complain about the dollars and term, but in today’s market this is how things are. It would appear that Chevy has learnt is lesson from standing pat the trade deadline and decided to be proactive with Grant, who has been the type of hard working player Winnipeg and TNSE admires.
Judging from Cheveldayoff’s press conference last week it would appear as if Al Montoya remains as the only UFA the Jets are going to attempt to lockup before really focusing on the RFA’s. With $23.9 million in cap space remaining and 8 RFA’s to lock up, there is still a lot of work to do in Peg City, so stay tuned and buckle up.