At his press conference yesterday, Chris Pronger noted that he would love to retire with the Philadelphia Flyers. Just a day later, he assured that he will, signing a seven-year, $35 million dollar contract extension. Pronger, 34, will be 42 years old when this contract expires following the 2015/2016 season.
The deal is structured so that the Pronger will cost the Flyers a reported $5 million against the salary cap over the next seven years, but his $6.25 million cap hit is still in effect this upcoming season Details on the exact structure of the contract are not yet available.
Presumably, the contract is structured with more cash in the early years of the deal and less cash in the later years of the deal, lowering the cap hit and giving Pronger more dollars should he retire before the deal is up. Sportsnet in Canada is reporting that this is the case, and that the deal also comes with a no-movement clause.
In signing Pronger to a long-term extension so quickly, the Flyers and general manager Paul Holmgren have promptly answered the critics who said that they gave up too much for Pronger, a player who without a extension could have walked as a free agent next July. He has never reached free agency in his 15-plus season career, however, and given that this is likely his last contract, it appears he never will be a free agent.