Flames agree to eight-year, $50M contract extension with MacKenzie Weegar

Eric Francis and Ryan Leslie discuss the Calgary Flames and defenceman MacKenzie Weegar agreeing to an eight-year $50 million contract extension and what it means for the long-term future of the team.

The Calgary Flames and defenceman MacKenzie Weegar have agreed to an eight-year, $50 million contract extension, the team announced Friday.

Weegar was part of a July 25 trade with the Panthers that sent Matthew Tkachuk to Florida and brought Jonathan Huberdeau and Weegar to Calgary.

Weegar would have become an unrestricted free agent next year.

"This is going to be fun," Weeger said of the upcoming season with the Flames. "It's going to be a long road, it's obviously a lot of hard work and the hard work starts now. One of the reasons I signed here is because I believe in this team … we have a winning team, a winning coach and a winning culture here."

Weegar, six feet and 206 pounds, had eight goals and 36 assists in 80 games last season.

The 26-year-old blue-liner was far from being a cant-miss prospect as a young player growing up Ottawa and his journey to the NHL included stops in junior B and the ECHL.

“When I signed the deal I just kept thinking about how long a road it has been for me,” said Weegar. “All my friends and family … all the support. It’s not just me that signed this deal, it’s everyone around me.”

The Panthers drafted Weegar in the seventh round, 206th overall, in the 2013 draft.

He won a Memorial Cup that year with the Halifax Mooseheads.

Weegar compiled 27 goals and 94 assists during his six seasons with the Panthers,

His contract counts $6.25 million against the NHL salary cap annually.

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