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Oilers and Nurse Move From 4-Yr to 8-Yr Contract Extension, Deal Close

The Edmonton Oilers have moved off talks of a four-year deal for Darnell Nurse and are new reportedly close on an 8-year, $9 million deal.

It wasn’t long ago that the Edmonton Oilers and Darnell Nurse were believed to be working out the details of a four-year extension. About five days ago, Elliotte Friedman reported that the two sides were focused on a four-year pact that would have seen his contract come up for renewal at the same time as Connor McDavid.

Related: Darnell Nurse and Oilers Reportedly Close to Signing 4-Year Extension

Between then and now, something from Nurse’s side must have changed. Friedman reports in his latest 31 Thoughts Podcast that the Oilers are working hard to get Nurse signed to a new deal and the expectation is that the contract will come in at eight years and $9 million per season.

The belief seems to be that deals for players like Dougie Hamilton, Zach Werenski and Seth Jones have changed the way both sides are thinking about an extension. Some will argue it’s an overpay, but it seems clear that any deal starting with less than $8 million was unlikely and that the $9 million mark seems to be the way things are leaning. It’s potentially a bit rich for what Nurse is offering today, but he’s got one more season on his current deal ($5.6 million) and if he continues to progress at the rate in which he has over the past two years, $9 million might be fair value for him over an eight-year stretch.

For the Oilers, this also offers long-term contract certainty. Nurse wants to be an Oiler, he and McDavid are extremely tight (which will help with contract renegotiations) and Nurse is part of the leadership core of the team. While he doesn’t play in all situations — he’s not on the Oilers top-unit power play– he could and he still logs upwards of 28 minutes per game on the regular.

It is believed with an improved bottom-six forward group, Nurse’s stat line and advance analytics numbers will get better. One of the arguments against him is that he doesn’t play as well when away from McDavid or Leon Draisaitl. Still, he’s got a great 5-v-5 numbers and it will be interesting to see if he can reproduce some of those incredible totals while shoring up some of the areas that he gets criticized for.

There’s not a harder working player on the team. For Edmonton, they feel investing in Nurse long-term now is a pretty good bet.

Next: Marc-Andre Fleury Informs Blackhawks He’ll Play Next Season



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