ANAHEIM (AP) — Carl Hagelin’s patience has been rewarded with a big new contract from the Anaheim Ducks.
The Ducks announced a four-year deal worth $16 million for their recently acquired Swedish forward on Friday, completing what’s likely their final significant move of the summer.
Hagelin was a restricted free agent after joining the Ducks in June in a trade with the New York Rangers, who got left wing Emerson Etem. Negotiations on Hagelin’s new deal dragged for several weeks, but it didn’t visibly concern the forward or the Ducks.
“I can’t say I was nervous that nothing was going to happen,” Hagelin said in a phone interview from Sweden. “It’s just a matter of finding the right term and the right number. They made a commitment to me … and it’s a perfect fit. You have some security going into the season, being wanted and feeling like you can be a big part of the team. They’re committed to me, and I’m committed to them.”
Hagelin has 58 goals and 72 assists in 266 games with the Rangers, including all 82 games last season. He is a speedy skater and an outstanding penalty killer who also scored 17 goals in each of the past two seasons, and he could slot in alongside center Ryan Kesler on the Ducks’ second line.
The defending Pacific Division champion Ducks expect Hagelin to take a bigger role than he held in New York, and he seems eager for the challenge.
“It’s an exciting time (for the Ducks),” Hagelin said. “You look at the roster we have, there’s so many good players. There’s a great opportunity to do big things with this team. I’m extremely motivated. I’m ready to head over there right now. I just want to leave right now.”
Hagelin played in the 2014 Stanley Cup Final during four straight playoff trips with the Rangers. He also won a silver medal with the Swedish Olympic team in Sochi, playing alongside new Ducks teammate Jakob Silfverberg, who got a four-year, $15 million deal from Anaheim last week.
After falling one game short of the Stanley Cup Final in a seven-game loss to the Chicago Blackhawks, the Ducks have re-signed all of their significant free agents heading into training camp next month while still maintaining ample room under the NHL salary cap.
During the process, Anaheim committed a combined $24 million to two offseason acquisitions who have yet to suit up for the club: Hagelin and veteran defenseman Kevin Bieksa, acquired from Vancouver last month. The Ducks also gave a six-year, $41.25 million extension to Kesler, who capped a solid debut season in Anaheim with excellent playoff work last spring.
The Ducks lost goal-scoring forward Matt Beleskey and defenseman Francois Beauchemin to free agency.
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