GLENDALE, Ariz. — The Phoenix Coyotes locked up one of their top young scorers just before the start of training camp, signing left wing Mikkel Boedker to a two-year contract that averages $2.55 million per season.
A front-line forward who can play either wing, Boedker did not file for arbitration as a restricted free agent this summer, believing a deal with the Coyotes would get done before the start of training camp next Wednesday.
“I thought it was a fair deal,” Coyotes general manager Don Maloney said on Saturday. “He still has something to prove, show that he’s producing for us. He does that, he’ll get paid a lot more money. I thought it was a good deal for a good young player for us.”
The eighth overall pick in the 2008 draft, Boedker had a superb first season with the Coyotes after four seasons playing in Europe, scoring 11 goals with 17 assists in 2008-09.
He bounced between the Coyotes and the AHL the next two seasons, but had 11 goals and 13 assists while playing all 82 games in 2011-12, helping Phoenix win an NHL division title and reach the Western Conference finals for the first time.
The 23-year-old from Denmark had seven goals and 19 assists during the lockout-shortened 2012-13 season and is projected to play on Phoenix’s first line with newly acquired centre Mike Ribeiro, who had 49 points in 48 games with Washington last season.
“He’s a key part for us right now,” Coyotes coach Dave Tippett said. “He’s a player who’s continued to get better the past couple of years and we look at him as a very valuable player for us this season.”
Boedker has 34 goals and 61 assists in parts of five seasons with the Coyotes.