Could Oettinger's new contract serve as blueprint for Bruins and Swayman?


David Pastrnak isn't the only important young player on the Boston Bruins roster entering the final year of his current contract.

Jeremy Swayman is about to begin the last season of his entry-level deal, which carries a salary cap hit of $925,000. The 23-year-old goalie should get a decent-sized raise in his next contract as a restricted free agent, and one extension that could be used as a template for both Swayman's camp and the Bruins is the deal Jake Oettinger just signed with the Dallas Stars.

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The Stars inked Oettinger to a three-year extension worth $12 million, the team announced Thursday. It has a $4 million salary cap hit.

Oettinger had a breakout 2021-22 season for the Stars. He started 46 games and posted a 30-15-1 record with a .914 save percentage and a 2.53 GAA. Oettinger made 64 saves in a 3-2 overtime loss to the Calgary Flames in Game 7 of the first round of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs. It was an awesome performance.

Here's a look at how Swayman's and Oettinger's stats compare. They both made their regular season NHL debuts during the 2020-21 campaign. 

Swayman's stats are a bit better, but he's played fewer games in both the regular season and playoffs. He started Boston's last five games against the Carolina Hurricanes in the first round of the 2022 playoffs, earning a 3-2-0 record with a .911 save percentage and 2.63 GAA. The Bruins were eliminated in Game 7.

A $4 million annual average salary would be fair for Swayman if he establishes himself as the clear-cut No. 1 goalie ahead of Linus Ullmark next season.

Swayman and Ullmark both played 41 games in 2021-22 and their stats were almost identical. The best-case scenario for the Bruins is one of them stepping up and being the true No. 1 option next season. Swayman becoming that guy, given his age and contract, would be the ideal situation. 

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