Bruins sign Charlie McAvoy to 3-year contract extension with AAV of $4.9 million

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Rest easy, Bruins fans. Your long offseason nightmare is finally over. 

Defenseman Charlie McAvoy signed off on a three-year contract extension with the Bruins that will pay the 21-year-old blueliner an average of $4.9 million per season.

This new deal for McAvoy follows a similar structure to the “bridge deal” that Zach Werenski inked with the Blue Jackets last Monday — in which the base salary will rise going into 2022, when McAvoy will once again become a free agent. Still, his cap hit of $4.9 million remains the same for all three years, giving Boston plenty of flexibility. 

By the time 2022 comes around, it's important to note that McAvoy will still be an RFA, giving Boston a bit more leverage when he’s due for yet another pay raise. McAvoy shouldn’t have many complaints either, given that he’s expected to make $7.3 million in the final year of that contract.

McAvoy, who will be arbitration eligible come 2022, does have a couple of intriguing options once his contract is up, due in large part to that $7.3 million in salary.

  • Work out a new contract extension with the Bruins — which, if he continues to progress at his current pace, could set him up for an even bigger pay day, especially with the salary cap slated to soar once the NHL inks a new TV deal in 2021-22. 
  • Go to arbitration or take a one-year, qualifying offer, which can be no less than his salary in the previous year — as such, at the very least, McAvoy will remain steady at $7.3 million in 2022-23 and go from there. 

With McAvoy now back in the fold, the Bruins now turn their attention to their lone remaining restricted free agent in Brandon Carlo. As @BruinsCapSpace notes, the Bruins now have about $3.2 million in available capital to round out their D corps by signing Carlo. When factoring in other cap maneuvers such as LTIR, Boston should have ample breathing room to avoid a salary crunch in 2019-20. 

More info to come...