Hellebuyck's New Contract Well Deserved
By Patrick Hoffman
The Winnipeg Jets were one of the league's best teams this season.
They were one of the top five teams in terms of points, they made it all the way to the Western Conference Finals, had great offense, a solid defensive core, great special teams, and a great No. 1 goaltender that was a Vezina Trophy Finalist.
Speaking of the Vezina Finalist, Jets' main man between the pipes, Connor Hellebuyck, just inked a six-year $37 million contract. He'll be making $6.167 million per year for a franchise that should be a Cup contender for the next several years.
Hellebuyck was outstanding this year. He had 44 wins, a 2.36 GAA, a .924 save percentage six shutouts. Not bad for someone that was supposed to split time with Steve Mason, a situation that did not pan out for the Jets.
Hellebuyck is a smooth cat between the pipes. He's always in position for not only the first shot, but also rebound opportunities, he's got a great glove hand, is someone who can come up with the big save when his team needs it the most, and has unbelievably quick reflexes.
The 25-year-old masked man also showed that he can play well in the postseason. In 17 games this year, he had 9 wins and posted a 2.36 GAA with a .922 save percentage and two shutots.
It is clear that Hellebuyck is going to have the opportunity to carry this team to the promise land. The Jets have never won a Cup, but with the team they have, and Hellebuyck locked up for the foreseeable future, that could change within the next few years.
Previously, Patrick has covered the NHL for Sportsnet.ca, Kukla’s Korner, Spector’s Hockey, About.com, NHL Network Radio blog, TheHockeyNews.com, The Fourth Period, Stan Fischler’s “The Fischler Report”, as well as a slew of others.