The Winnipeg Jets have a number of contracts that are set to expire at the end of the 2021-2022 season. Here’s a look at those players and their contracts.
The Winnipeg Jets are still not even halfway into the 2021-2022 regular season, but contracts have been a major factor this season with the implications of players added to the COVID-19 protocol, the addition of the taxi squad, and the salary cap.
Although the offseason is a long way away, it is still interesting to look at those players from the Jets who are currently in the last season of the contracts.
First, this article will look at defense and goaltenders who have expiring contracts, and then it will look at unrestricted free agent (“UFA”) forwards and finally end with the restricted free agent (“RFA”) forwards.
3. Defense and Goaltenders
Nathan Beaulieu (UFA)
Beaulieu is currently in the final year of his two-year contract that has an average annual value (“AAV”) of $1,250,000.
The twenty-nine-year-old has fallen down the Jets’ depth chart. The Jets have a handful of younger defensemen who are making the jump to the NHL like Dylan Samberg and Ville Heinola and they have seemed to have jumped ahead of Beaulieu on the depth chart. Also, they have a number of defensemen who are performing extremely well in the minors or juniors and may be on the cusp of making the roster next season. These players include the likes of Declan Chisholm, Leon Gawanke, Johnathan Kovacevic, and Tyrel Bauer.
When you take all of these factors into account, it does not look likely that the Jets will resign Beaulieu. It will be interesting to see if Kevin Cheveldayoff will look to move Beaulieu at the trade deadline.
Prospect Defensemen (Kovacevic, Gawanke, Noiger)- All RFAs
There are three Jets prospect defensemen that will be RFA’s this upcoming offseason. Those defensemen are Johnathan Kovacevic, Leon Gawanke, and Nelson Noiger.
The twenty-five-year-old Noiger is the only one of these three who has played at the NHL level. He played ten games with the Jets during the 2016-2017 season and then one more game during the 2018-2019 season.
Gawanke is having an outstanding season for the Moose and looks to be a top-six defenseman for the Jets in the near future. Gawanke is only twenty-two years old and is currently on his entry-level contract.
Kovacevic signed a one-year two-way deal with Winnipeg this past offseason. He has joined the Moose at the end of the 2018-2019 season and has played each season since in Manitoba.
Eric Comrie (RFA)
Comrie entered into a one-year contract with the Jets with an AAV of $750,000. He has played well so far this season in relief of Connor Hellebuyck and is currently making a great case to be resigned for the 2022-2023 season.