Star defenseman Dougie Hamilton signed a huge long term extension with the New Jersey Devils. Hamilton was considered the best free agent this offseason with many teams interested in his services, but in the end, Hamilton decided to sign with the team that offered him the most money and was the best fit, the New Jersey Devils.
Breaking down the deal, Hamilton will make $9 million AAV for seven seasons, with a $31 million signing bonus. Hamilton has a NMC for the entire duration of the contract with a M-NTC for the last three years of the contract.
Hamilton, 28, is a big right shot defenseman that is mostly known for his offensive abilities, scoring 40+ points in every season since 2014-15. Hamilton is impactful on the defensive side of the game as well, using his big 6-foot-6, 227-pound frame to his advantage. Prior to signing with the Devils, Hamilton was the no. 1 defenseman for the Carolina Hurricanes and helped lead them to the 2nd round of the Playoffs. Now Hamilton will join a young New Jersey Devils team and hopes to get them out of their rebuild.
Last season, the Devils biggest weakness was their defense, riddled with injuries and subsequently filled with young, inexperienced defensemen. General Manager Tom Fitzgerald made it his goal to build the defense this offseason and he did just that. First, Fitzgerald acquired defensemen Ryan Graves from the Colorado Avalanche, a big defensive defense that the Devils desperately needed. Then, he drafted Luke Hughes, a young puck-moving defense and the brother of Devils star forward Jack Hughes. And finally, he signed Hamilton to a massive deal. Fitzgerald is significantly improving the team and helping them get out of their rebuild.
This is the Devils projected lineup going into next season:
Janne Kuokkanen-Jack Hughes-Yegor Sharangovich
Pavel Zacha-Nico Hischier-Jesper Bratt
Nolan Foote-Jesper Boqvist-Alexander Holtz
Miles Wood-Michael McLeod-Andreas Johnsson
Ryan Graves-Dougie Hamilton
Ty Smith-Damon Severson
Jonas Siegenthaler-P.K Subban
Overall, this signing was great for both sides. Dougie Hamilton finally gets the big payday he deserves while the Devils get their no. 1 defensemen who wants to play for the franchise.