The Kings had never done a 10-year deal. Not with defenseman Drew Doughty, not with center Anze Kopitar and not even going back to the days of hockey legend Wayne Gretzky.
That barrier was broken Thursday with the team’s 10-year contract extension with Conn Smythe-winning goalie Jonathan Quick. Those familiar with the deal but not authorized to comment on the details said it was worth $58 million, noting it tapered off in the final three years, making it salary-cap friendly.
The extension kicks in after next season when Quick is to make $1.7 million, a bargain for a playoff most valuable player. It ties Quick to the Kings through the 2022-23 season.
Quick, 26, won the Conn Smythe Trophy in leading the Kings to their first Stanley Cup in 45 years, represented them in the All-Star game and was the Vezina Trophy runner-up.
“We are very happy to have a long-term agreement in place with one of our top young players,” Kings President and General Manager Dean Lombardi said in a statement. “At this point we prefer to comment more on or around July 1.”
The deal came together with uncommon speed. Lombardi had a preliminary discussion with Quick’s representatives over the weekend at the NHL entry draft in Pittsburgh. There was little doubt that Quick wanted to stay with the Kings in a long-term situation and his sentiment helped get the deal done, in principle, early this week.
July 1 is the first day contracts can be signed under terms of the collective bargaining agreement. For the sake of comparison, the bar was set last summer when Nashville signed goaltender Pekka Rinne to a seven-year, $49-million deal. Rinne finished third in the Vezina Trophy voting for top goalie, behind Quick and winner Henrik Lundqvist of the New York Rangers.
Another goalie contract to consider: About a year ago, the Philadelphia Flyers signed Ilya Bryzgalov to a nine-year, $51-million deal, which declines significantly in the final two years.
Kings forwards Mike Richards and Jeff Carter have longer deals, but those were negotiated when they were with the Flyers.
Quick and the Kings could not offer more specifics about the deal, but the goalie talked about keeping the core of the team together when he was in Las Vegas for the NHL Awards last week. He had 16 wins and a 1.41 goals-against average and save percentage of .946 in the run to the Cup.
“It’s a younger group,” he said. “You want to keep everyone here, keep as much of this team intact as you can. Obviously, we know it’s part of the game where some guys get moved and it’s unfortunate. But we want to keep as much of the team intact.
“We really love the group. The chemistry we have in the room is awesome.”
Quick is coming off a regular season of 35 wins and a franchise-record 10 shutouts.
Quick’s teammates were delighted.
Dustin Penner, via Twitter, teased Quick: “Hey @JonathanQuick32 congrats on the new 10yr deal. 10 more yrs of cursing! ha now u can replace the wallet u lost in vegas.”
Wrote captain Dustin Brown: “Congrats to @JonathanQuick32 on the new deal. King for life. Well deserved. #dinneronquickie