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Zetterberg signs 12-year, $73 million contract

Congrats to the 28% of those WIM readers who voted that the Detroit Red Wings would re-sign Henrik Zetterberg by the end of January. At a 2 p.m. press conference today (which you can watch on the Wings website), the Wings announced that they have re-signed Hank to a 12-year, $73 million contract. One of the best parts? The cap hit each year is only $6.08 million.

According to Helene St. James at the Detroit Free Press, this is the specific breakdown of the contract:

09-10 $7.4 Million
10-11 $7.75 Million
11-12 $7.75 Million
12-13 $7.75 Million
13-14 $7.5 Million
14-15 $7.5 Million
15-16 $7.5 Million
16-17 $7.5 Million
17-18 $7.0 Million
18-19 $3.35 Million
19-20 $1.0 Million
20-21 $1.0 Million

You know what else is cool about the numbers above? Zetterberg refused to make more than Nicklas Lidstrom next year so that's why he'll only be making $7.4 so it's slightly less than the Wings captain.

The Wings official Twitter account posted pictures along with a couple quotes from the conference including Zetterberg saying, "I believe I have 12 years in me and I don't want to play anywhere else."

Their official website has photos from the event and an article talking about Zetterberg's time with the Wings.

“I have never seen any reason to want to go anywhere else,” said Zetterberg after Wednesday’s press conference at Joe Louis Arena. “I really like it here, on the ice and off the ice, great teammates, great coaching staff, great owners that know we’ll have a good team every year. I don’t see any reason why I shouldn’t stay.  I love it here and I want to be here forever.”

In terms of a cap hit, this is a great deal for the Wings when re-signing one of the stars in the league. But there is certainly a risk attached to this deal. 12 years is a long time and as we've clearly seen with Islanders' goalie Rick DiPietro, injuries can crop up and keep the player off the ice but still costing the team. Hopefully, we won't see any of these problems with Hank and we can just talk about how much of a genius GM Ken Holland is.

“Obviously when you talk about a 12-year contract, one of the things obviously is risk, on both sides, and we feel that we were able to find a solution that, there’s always risks on both sides but both sides are very, very excited,” Holland said. “And I’m excited that Henrik is going to be a Red Wing for life and a player to build around, so welcome Henrik, and congratulations.”

And you all know that if Yzerman is pleased with the deal, I'm usually pretty happy too. After plenty of back and forth negotiations, the two sides were able to come to an agreement with something that was beneficial to both sides.

“From day one in his first year as a rookie up until this day and for the next 12 years, we have had a chance to watch him play, watch him develop,” Yzerman said. “Got to know him myself personally, in the locker room playing along side him, watching his work ethic, seeing his character, seeing all the intangible things that it takes to be a good hockey player and a player to build your team around and structure everything around.  You get a little bit of the inside look that some other people don’t have.  

“For us, it was very important that we keep Henrik in the organization, to have him here.  He’s the type of person that we want to represent our organization throughout his career.  He was drafted by the Red Wings, he won a Stanley Cup, our goal is to try and keep this team together, and in order to do that we have to keep our best players, and Henrik is one of them.”

So now we can speculate about which player will be signed next and which one(s) will be shown the door.