Center/Left Winger Leon Draisaitl re-signs with the Edmonton Oilers after a terrific year on the wing of Connor McDavid. Draisaitl signed an eight-year year, $68 million contract with the Oilers. His contract will see him stay with the team until 2025. Draisaitl has spent the first three seasons of his career in Edmonton.
Leon Draisaitl Re-Signs With Edmonton Oilers
Draisaitl had a career season in 2016-17, really rising to the expectations the Oilers had for him when he was drafted back in 2014 in the number three slot. His 29 goals and 77 points were second only to Connor McDavid’s 30 and 100 on the Oilers, as he finished eighth in overall league scoring at a .94 points per game rate carrying a 51.31% Corsi-for percentage. His 57.78 Corsi-for per 60 minutes ranked fourth on the team among skaters who had played 700 or more minutes. The thing is, he’s turning 22 on October 27th.
Draisaitl’s extension is an obvious step above from his entry-level contract that paid him an AAV of $3.4 million including $2.5 million per year in bonuses but counted against the salary cap as $925,000.
The Cologne native’s rise to stardom did not come without its difficulties, however. Many remember his first season in 2014-15 when he suited up for 37 games only scoring two goals and nine points. There was much confusion as to why he was not sent down earlier to represent Germany at the World Junior Championships. He tore the WHL up after, however, and the next season he mightily improved lighting the lamp 19 times with 51 points to his name in his first full season at 72 games.
The hype around Draisaitl was well deserved with his 1.35 points-per-game WHL career for the Prince Albert Raiders and Kelowna Rockets scoring 78 goals and 216 points in 160 contests. The first year he was sent down, he had an incredible 2015 WHL Playoffs scoring 10 goals and 28 points in 19 games including four more goals and seven more points in five Memorial Cup Games. Kelowna fell just short despite Draisaitl’s effort, losing 2-1 in the Final to the Oshawa Generals in overtime.
It’s clear Draisaitl is one of many rising stars in the league, and general manager Peter Chiarelli wanted to lock him up as soon as possible paying him handsomely as such. He will have to do so with the franchise’s most important player in decades next in the form of McDavid’s contract.