Have you started your homework yet for next season's hockey pool draft? Well, if you have, you can officially slot Andrew Hammond back into the fold for the Ottawa Senators, as the potential unrestricted free agent signed a contract extension on Wednesday, securing his role with the team for next season.
Highlighted already in my outlook for the Senators last week, Hammond was eligible to hit the open market, but with a great showing with the team at the end of the year and into the playoffs, the team was keen to sign him and they ended up with a pretty good deal, signing the 27-year old to a 3-year deal, with a cap hit of $1.35 million per season.
Hammond finished off the year with 20 wins, 3 shutouts and 1 assist last season and he didn't start his season until the middle of February. In the end, he finished with 47 points in the hockey pool, but no one was able to claim him in last year's pool.
The Senators are now stacked with goaltending talent, so there will be a filtering out process, I'm sure, when it comes to training camp and that will have a huge effect to how we perceive the pecking order going into next season's draft. Hammond, Craig Anderson and Robin Lehner all took solid reps last season and the team added NCAA standout Matt O'Connor to the mix, but he isn't expected to make the jump right away, but his presence looms large. There is an expectation that the Senators will move someone and it will be interesting to see what kind of return they get.
Today, Hammond ranks as the 22nd best goalie from last season's numbers, signed to a deal for next season.
The Senators got a very cap-friendly deal out of this as well, which is great news for the organization. With this deal being less than $2 million per year, there is very little risk of Hammond not living up to his breakout year, as they could demote him with very little weighing against the club. In addition to my outlook's numbers, the Senators are now standing at 34 signed players in total, coming in at about $70.2 million.