Winnipeg Jets Sign Three

The Winnipeg Jets signed three of their restricted free agents (RFAs) to contracts recently. 

Forwards Marko Dano and Nic Petan agreed to terms on one year deals, while the Jets locked up defenseman Tucker Poolman for three years.  Poolman and Dano signed on July 24, while Petan was inked on August 1.

Tucker Poolman

Pos:  D   Shot:  R
DOB:  June 8, 1993   Born:  Dubuque, IA
Height:  6′ 2”   Weight:  199
Drafted:  2013   Rnd: 5th   Overall: 127
2017-18:  GP: 24  G: 1  A: 1  Pts:  2  PIM: 0
Career:  GP: 24  G: 1  A: 1  Pts: 2  PIM: 0

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Contract:  3 years at an AAV of 775k

Analysis:

I really like this contract.  Poolman is at the very least a decent #7-8 defenseman who can fill in admirably when any of the regulars go down.  I still think he has top six potential, and could be a solid defensive defenseman on the third pairing, but, at 25 years old, he may not reach that potential.  Still, he will be making barely above league minimum, which means that even if he tops out as a depth defenseman, it is still good value.  Having guys like him, Chiarot and Morrow around will be handy for deep playoff runs.  From Poolman’s perspective, this is a one-way deal, which means he gets paid the same in the AHL as he does in the NHL.  So, even if he stays a tweener, he will still get paid an NHL salary, so this contract makes sense for him as well.

Final Thought:

Poolman is a good guy to have as a young depth defenseman who can fill in nicely in the case of injury.  Having him signed for 3 years at just above the league minimum is fantastic value.

This contract gets: ?

Chevy gets an:  A-

 

Marko Dano

Pos:  W   Shot:  L
DOB: November 30, 1994   Born:  Eisenstadt, Austria
Height:  5′ 11”   Weight:  215
Drafted:  2013   Rnd: 1st   Overall: 27
2017-18:  GP: 23  G: 2  A: 1  Pts:  3  PIM: 6
Career:  GP: 130  G: 19  A: 26  Pts: 45  PIM: 40

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Contract:  1 year at 800k

Analysis: 

Marko Dano is a player that I want to like, but I don’t see where he fits in with the Jets.  He will be 24 years old this fall, is on his third NHL team, and still hasn’t cemented himself as an NHL regular.  It is likely that him and Petan battle it out for the final forward spot in the starting lineup, with the other spending time in the press box.  Personally, I prefer Petan and his playmaking ability and creativity.  Moreover, Dano’s icetime will further be challenged by players like Brendan Lemieux, Mason Appleton and Kristian Vesalainen.  That being said, Dano is a former first round pick, and he actually scored pretty well with Columbus a few years back.  He hasn’t been bad for the Jets, but has seen very limited action.

Final Thought:

Dano is a player with potential, but has never really been given the opportunity to succeed in Winnipeg.  At 800k, his contract is good value, and it doesn’t hurt to keep him in the fold for another year, even if he might get stuck in the press box again.  I think that there’s a good chance that Dano moves onto a fourth NHL team next year, as guys like Appleton and Vesalainen will likely pass him on the depth chart.  Overall, the length and AAV is appropriate for a player of Dano’s esque, and there’s always the chance that he may break out this year.

This contract gets: ?

Chevy gets a: B

 

Nic Petan

Pos:  W   Shot:  L
DOB: March 22, 1995   Born:  Delta, BC
Height:  5′ 9”   Weight:  179
Drafted:  2013   Rnd: 2nd   Overall: 43
2017-18:  GP: 15  G: 2  A: 0  Pts:  2  PIM: 6
Career:  GP: 95  G: 5  A: 16  Pts: 21  PIM: 28

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Contract:  One-year, two-way contract at 875k

Analysis:  

For those who know me, it’s no secret that I like Nic Petan.  I am always very hopeful for players of Petan’s ilk (undersized players who rip up junior – Jet prospect Skyler McKenzie being another example) and I’ve always thought he had top six potential.  He has not broken through yet in the NHL, but last year he was PPG in the AHL. At 23 years old, it might be now or never for Petan to realize his potential.  Similar to Dano, Petan has never really been given a real opportunity with the Jets.  He has spent most of his time in the NHL playing minimal minutes on the fourth line, while being saddled to linemates such as Chris Thorburn and Matt Hendricks.  I still believe that given talented linemates, Nic Petan can make an impact at the NHL level.  I wouldn’t mind seeing him with guys like Mathieu Perreault, Jack Roslovic and Bryan Little this year.  Petan is waiver eligible this season, and I don’t think he passes through waivers unclaimed.  However if he does, his two-way contract means he will get paid significantly less in the minors.  I think he will make the Winnipeg Jets’ opening night roster, and will battle with Dano for starting icetime.  Petan is also interesting as trade bait.  If the Jets feel he is not a part of their future, they may include him in a trade before his value completely diminishes.

Final Thought: 

This contract is completely fair for Petan.  He will fight for a roster spot this year, and in my opinion it is make it or break it for him.  If he isn’t successful this season then I don’t think we will see him in Winnipeg next year unless he is wearing an opposing team’s jersey.

This contract gets: ?

Chevy gets a: B

 

The Bottom Line:

The Jets cleaned up a little bit of their restricted free agents with these signings.  Petan and Dano went for about what I expected, and Poolman’s AAV was expected, but I am a bit (pleasantly) surprised by the term.  Overall, these are relatively minor signings and none of these contracts will result in cap problems.  The Jets just retained some depth for another year, and hopefully another long playoff run. The Jets have four remaining restricted free agents: Nicolas Kerdiles, J.C. Lipon, Eric Comrie and Josh Morrissey.

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