Full disclosure: I love bridge deals. Keep that in mind as you read this entire news article.
The Winnipeg Jets have signed Kyle Connor to a guesstimated seven year, $49 million contract (AAV $7 million). This might not be the best move for the Jets and I am not saying that because they are going to have some fun getting under the salary cap if Dustin Byfuglien returns (they have suspended him so his cap hit does not count right now).
Kyle Connor deal once finalized - which it isn’t yet - will be for between $7 M and $7.25 M aav x seven years. Paperwork still being worked on.— Pierre LeBrun (@PierreVLeBrun) September 29, 2019
The Jets do not know who Kyle Connor is as a player away from Mark Scheifele and Blake Wheeler. That is kind of a big deal. Wheeler and Scheifele are the two biggest fish on the Jets and the Jets only know who Connor is as a player when he is alongside them. How much of his production is tied to the two of them and how much of it is self-generated. Connor could be a great player, but he could also be a good player who is opportunistic. Honestly, it makes a lot of sense from his perspective to sign this contract just in case he is moved off the top line and produces less. It makes less sense for the Jets, but he is signed for a better AAV than someone line Mitch Marner, so I will take it.
And that is it. The summer of misery is over and the Jets have managed to sign all their RFAs. My only remaining question is what took so long? Both these contract (Connor and Patrik Laine) seem fairly straightforward and close to what it seemed like the players would sign for at the start of the summer. Why did it take all summer to reach this conclusion? Also, does this mean Connor loves Winnipeg more than Laine?