Matt Murray started as a backup goalie for the Pittsburgh Penguins but eventually his hard work paid off. The Penguins agreed to give Murray a three-year contract extension worth $11.25 million starting next season.
According to ESPN, the contract extension was due to Murray’s breakout last season wherein he helped the Penguins win their fourth Stanley Cup. The 22-year old Canadian took over the goalie chores from Marc-Andre Fleury who was on a concussion watch. The deal comes at a perfect time as Murray would have become an unrestricted free agent by the end of the season.
With the new deal, Murray is to stay as a Penguin until 2020 and may even get the starting job over Fleury. The contract extension will take effect next season and will give Murray a hefty $3.75 million per season.
Thrilled with the turn out of the negotiations, Murray has yet to play for the Penguins this season as he is recovering from a broken hand, Murray is positive to get back to work. He practiced with the team last Thursday which the team called a good sign.
“I’m just trying to push myself in practice and see how it feels,” Murray said.
Penguins G Matt Murray (hand) is again practicing with his teammates.
— Dave Molinari (@MolinariPG) October 24, 2016
Before joining the Penguins, Murray played major junior hockey in the Ontario Hockey League with the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds. He signed to a three-year entry-level contract with the Penguins in Sept. 2013.
Now that the league is going for an expansion where teams get to protect one goalie it is not yet safe to say that Fleury will be off the team. Fleury is still the best goalie in the Penguin’s franchise history. But with a salary of just $5.75 annually, the Penguins will be at the crossroads to decide who will be their franchise goalie.
Is Matt Murray worth a 3-year, $11.25-million extension? pic.twitter.com/H5fS6vetOQ
— NHL on NBC (@NHLonNBCSports) October 22, 2016
Things are looking good for Murray as he has a bright future ahead of him in the NHL and in the Penguins roster as well. He has won a Stanley Cup and as young as he is, there is no doubt that he wants a repeat of what they have already achieved.
Matt Murray is a great young goalie, but let's not forget that M.A. Fleury is also a cup champion & still an elite NHL starter. #TendyLove
— ShitGoaliesNeverSay (@GoaliesNeverSay) October 21, 2016
Photo Courtesy: Michael Miller/Creative Commons