By SCHUYLER DIXON, AP Sports Writer
FRISCO, Texas (AP) — The Dallas Stars have avoided any lingering questions about the future of Tyler Seguin, signing the five-time All-Star center to a $78.8 million, eight-year contract extension that goes through the 2026-27 season.
General manager Jim Nill announced the deal Thursday before the Stars departed Texas to start training camp in Boise, Idaho. The team posted a Mario-inspired video on its Twitter account celebrating the news.
“Emotional. It was a process, a learning process this summer. Learning the whole business side of negotiations,” the 26-year-old Seguin said. “At the end of the day, I knew where I wanted to be. I knew where home was. That was here in Dallas.”
Without the extension, Seguin could have become an unrestricted free agent after this season, when he will make $6.5 million to wrap up his current $34.5 million, six-year contract.
Seguin has played the past five seasons in Dallas since getting traded in the summer of 2013 from Boston, where he was his first three NHL seasons and was a member of the Bruins when they won the 2011 Stanley Cup
He scored a career-high 40 goals last season and had 78 total points. Only Stars captain Jamie Benn, a two-time All-Star who is 29, had more points last season with 79 (36 goals, 43 assists) — and that was after Benn had eight goals and two assists in his last five games.
“With Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin, I think our franchise is in good spot over the next eight or nine years,” Nill said.
“Tyler’s really coming into his prime right now. I think last year we saw him take a major step. He became one of our leaders,” the GM said. “He’s really hit the prime of his career.”
Seguin has 505 points (229 goals, 276 assists) in 590 regular-season games. In five playoff appearances, he has 21 points (seven points, 14 assists) in 49 games.
Nill said it was important to get the extension done before training camp and the season.
“First of all, you don’t want the distraction. It’s important for the team and for Tyler,” Nill said. “It’s not easy when you’ve got this weighing on you. The other thing is the risk of injury. All of a sudden you get on the ice and you catch a rut, you never know what’s going to happen. For us, it lets us continue moving forward and we continue to make this team better.”
— Dallas Stars (@DallasStars) September 13, 2018