Brooks Laich, Washington Capitals Agree To Six-Year Contract Extension

Brooks Laich will return to the Washington Capitals next season (and for five more after that) after he and the team agreed on a six-year contract reportedly worth $27 million.

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Brooks Laich Re-Signs With Washington Capitals, Hopes To Lead Team To Unparalleled Success

Brooks Laich came to Washington in exchange for Peter Bondra, but what the Caps did not realize is that by trading away one of their franchise's most iconic faces, they would eventually get one back in return.


George McPhee Speaks Abouts Brooks Laich, Free Agency, Injury Updates

In a brief press conference at Kettler Capitals Iceplex Tuesday, Washington Capitals General Manager George McPhee was pleased to have Brooks Laich, who signed a six-year contract extension Tuesday, back in the fold.

"We certainly always wanted him back," McPhee said. "We had a great conversation at the end of the season. Obviously, he told us that he wanted to come back, but you never know in negotiation how it's going to go. Once we got our head around the term and the salary and everything else and got to that sweet spot, it was done. You realize that this a guy that we'd like to have and this is the right number, let's do it."

McPhee mentioned that he sees Laich playing more at the center position next season than in years past and wants to use his versatility to the Caps' advantage. But McPhee shot down any notion that a possible move for Laich to center meant that unrestricted free agent center Jason Arnott would not return.

Speaking of free agents, McPhee was also mum on the status of negotiations between the team and restricted free agents Karl Alzner, Semyon Varlamov and newly-acquired Troy Brouwer.

"We've negotiated and I don't know anymore than you do at this point whether it will happen or not," McPhee said in regards to re-signing Varlamov. "We certainly like the goalies we have, but who gets No. 1 is up to them. We don't make that decision, they do by the way they play. The opportunities are there. It's either the three that we have or the two that we have."

What McPhee did provide updates on were the respective injury statuses of Eric Fehr, Tom Poti and Dennis Wideman. McPhee said that Fehr will be ready for training camp after undergoing shoulder surgery in May. McPhee saw Wideman last week and that he has "100 percent" flexibility now, but continues to rehab from a leg hematoma suffered against the Carolina Hurricanes in March that sidelined him for the rest of the season. Meanwhile, McPhee said that he hasn't heard anything from Poti, who suffered from a groin injury and missed most of last season, but still believes that he is fighting for his career.


Brooks Laich Says There Was 'Never A Serious Consideration' To Leave Washington Capitals

Brooks Laich gave a conference call to reporters after signing a new six-year, $27 million contract with the Washington Capitals earlier Tuesday morning. Laich said he never wanted to leave Washington and actually had a verbal agreement in place prior to last Friday's NHL Draft.

Here is a transcript of his remarks. You can listen to the whole call here.

On how the new deal was signed.

There was never a serious consideration to go anywhere else.  When the season ended, I took some time off and got away from hockey for a little bit, and after that, I started talking to my family and my agent, and we started looking at our options. I talked with a few people in the organization, and after a few conversations with them, it was very evident that I wanted to return.


I gave my agent specific instructions that my main goal was to get back with Washington. That was the only consideration I really ever had, and the rest was up to him and Washington.

On why he stayed in D.C. over other Stanley Cup contenders

If you look at some of the other cup contenders, if you look at San Jose, if you look at Detroit, some of these other teams, their best players are already late in their 20s-early 30s. The core of our team and our most talented players is still young and still getting better.

On the need for the Capitals to stay patient

There were people talking about how if Boston lost in the first round, there would be big changes and stuff like that. It just goes to show patience is a virtue and patience wins out. It's a hard trophy to win, the Stanley Cup. Only one team can win, and that means 29 other teams are disappointed and questioning, 'Should we make changes here or there.' You just hope that eventually, your year is going to come around. For our guys, hopefully our year is close, and hopefully it's more than one year.

On whether he ever seriously considered signing elsewhere

[Washington and I] had a verbal agreement and everything intact before the NHL Draft. The draft was kind of my deadline. I wanted to get a deal done before the draft. I had no intention of going until July 1 or trying to push Washington right to the very edge. I just wanted to get a good fair deal, and I wanted to get it done before the draft, just so I knew I would be returning to Washington. At the draft, anything can happen.


I didn't want Washington to go to the draft with the feeling that, 'He's looking to test the market, he's probably not coming back, so we need to make a move to cover up the loss of him.' If that happened, I'd be pushed out the door and forced to go to free agency.

On what changes the team needs to make to have more playoff success

This year, there's got to be a lot more accountability from our players, to ourselves and to the coaches. Our coaching staff does a great job setting out the game plan, and it's up to every single player to adhere to that game plan. It's up to every single player -- doesn't matter how much you make, how long you've been here or what your name is -- to practice as hard as they can, to practice as a team, to work as a team. There's a lot of things where, sometimes when you're tested, things start to fray, little things like that. When you're tested, you have to be so tight, you have to rely on each other so much.


This year, we have to hold each other accountable a lot more. If we see a teammate not doing something that we want as a group that will lead to group success, we have to reign them in and hold everyone accountable.

On new Washington Capital Troy Brouwer

I think he's going to fit in so well with us. He's a young guy that comes in with energy. He's a physical guy. He can score, he can hit, he can block shots, power play, penalty kill. I think Troy is just what you call a 'player.'


Capitals GM George McPhee Says Signing Brooks Laich A Sign That Team Should Be Kept Together

Washington Capitals GM George McPhee went on "The Mike Wise Show With Holden Kushner" Tuesday afternoon to discuss, among other things, the six-year, $27 million contract Brooks Laich just inked to stay with the Caps. McPhee had this to say about the deal:

He's been a very valuable player for us. There's no doubt about that, and, you know, you look at what this team has done the last four years - we've been a heck of a team. We haven't won our cup yet, but we've been a heck of a team. Winning division titles, conference titles, presidents' trophies, and he's been a big part of that, and I'm doing my darndest to keep this team together.

McPhee obviously thinks very highly of Laich. Here's what he said about the forward:

Brooks has certainly got base assets that we really like, in terms of size and speed, but he's worked really hard to become a valuable player. He's become our best penalty killer.
The versatility is there, the integrity's there, the character's there. He's a tremendously fit athlete, so everything that we want is there. He's committed, he wants to be a player, he wants to win.

Brooks Laich Re-Signs With Washington Capitals, Receives Limited No-Trade Clause

Brooks Laich has re-signed with the Washington Capitals for six years and $27 million, which is an average of $4.5 million per season. That may seem like a lot of money, but he likely would have received even more had he hit the open market. So why did he decide to stay in D.C.?

Perhaps one reason was that the Capitals gave him a limited no-trade clause, according to Craig Custance of AOL/Sporting News. That no-trade clause will be for the first four years of his contract and will help prevent him from being dealt elsewhere. Capitals general manager George McPhee is traditionally reluctant to hand out no-trade clauses, which should tell you how the Capitals feel about Laich.

In other words, it looks like Capitals fans can indeed count on Laich playing in Washington D.C. for a very long time. The Capitals, in signing him the way they did, made it very difficult to deal him.

For more on Laich's signing, check out Japers' Rink.


Ted Leonsis Is Pretty Pumped To Have Brooks Laich Back

On the heels of re-signing forward Brooks Laich to a six-year extension, Capitals owner Ted Leonsis took to his blog and posted some serious positive vibes about his team’s newest long-term investment.

The man upstairs had this to say about Laich, whom the Capitals first acquired by trading the former face of their franchise, Peter Bondra.

He is a talented multi-purpose player with high integrity and a great motor. He loves our city and our fan base. I am grateful that he has shown his belief in our team and that he is dedicated to doing whatever possible to help us achieve all of our collective aspirations.

At $27 million, it’s good that Leonsis is happy with his investment. Shoring up Laich’s future with the team is hopefully a positive step toward the Caps’ first Stanley Cup title.

Hopefully, everyone will be as happy with this contract six years from now as they are today.


Brooks Laich, Washington Capitals Agree To Six-Year Contract Extension

The Washington Capitals and forward Brooks Laich have agreed to a six-year contract extension. Per Mike Vogel, the contract will be worth $27 million.

Laich scored 16 goals and added 32 assists in 82 games for the Caps last season. Since being acquired from the Ottawa Senators in 2004 along with a draft pick and future considerations in exchange for Peter Bondra, Laich has 100 goals and 137 assists in 475 regular season games. Laich has played in all 82 games for the Caps in three of the last four seasons.

Laich's future with the Caps seemed murky at best. A relatively weak free agent propelled Laich to the top of the class along with the Dallas Stars' Brad Richards and he had been mum in recent weeks. Yet, Laich never intended to test the market:

"It wasn't very stressful at all," says Laich of the negotiating process. "Washington was easily my first choice. I gave my agent instructions that I fully intended to return to Washington and that was my only choice. I wasn't looking to test the market."

Laich's return now gives the Caps eight remaining "regulars" to negotiate with. Monday, the Caps extended qualifying offers to restricted free agents Karl Alzner, Semyon Varlamov and newly-acquired Troy Brouwer.

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