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Red Wings, Zetterberg agree to 12-year, $72 million contract - 1-28-09

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .

The Red Wings and forward Henrik Zetterberg (above) have agreed to a 12-year, $72 million contract extension. The deal will have a salary cap hit of $6 million per season. Zetterberg won the Conn Smythe Award last season as the MVP of the playoffs and led Detroit to the Stanley Cup.

EN Says: Wow. That's a huge deal. Especially given the current economic troubles in the world which the NHL is not immune from. Depending on league revenues, the salary cap can actually fall.

That said, getting an elite all-world talent like Zetterberg for "only" $6 million per season is a steal. He could easily command $10 based on the free agent mark this past off season.

While Zetterberg's probably a pretty happy camper today, you have to wonder what former Penguins forward Marian Hossa is thinking. He took a relatively small deal with Detroit with the hopes of winning a championship and had expressed a desire to sign a long-term deal with the Red Wings. Even at a fairly cap-friendly number, Zetterberg's deal doesn't exactly bode well for Hossa's hopes to stay in Motown. The same applies to Johan Franzen who is an unrestricted free agent after this season. You don't know of any teams which could use a scoring winger or two do you?

But if anyone could find a way to hang on to Hossa, it's Detroit general manager Ken Holland. He's found a way to "brainwash" players into taking lesser contracts in order to win in Detroit. In all seriousness, Holland and company have created a winning atmosphere which players from all around the league are willing to sacrifice a bit in order to be a part of. Zetterberg's deal is the perfect example of that.

(Photo: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

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