Tomas Plekanec signed a six-year-thirty million dollar contract with the Canadiens today. Considering the lack of centre ice talent available on the free agent market this year, it’s quite probable that Plekanec would have milked another million dollars from one of the other NHL teams.
It was clear from the beginning Plekanec wanted to stay in Montreal, if at all possible.
From the Canadiens Publicity Department-
Montreal Canadiens general manager Pierre Gauthier announced today the signing of forward Tomas Plekanec to a six-year contract (2010-11 to 2015-16). As per club policy, financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
Plekanec, 27, completed in 2009-10 his fifth season with the Canadiens. The centreman led the Canadiens in scoring, while setting a personal-high with 70 points (25 goals, 45 assists) in 82 games. He also served 50 penalty minutes and maintained a +5 plus/minus differential, while averaging 19:57 seconds of ice time per game. Plekanec was tied for 26th in the NHL in points (70), tied for 24th in assists (45) and tied for 16th in powerplay assists (21).
Plekanec also registered 216 shots on goal and scored four winning goals. He led the team and ranked 7th in the NHL in faceoffs won (791), for a 49% faceoff winning percentage. The Czech forward registered 11 points in 19 playoff games (4 goals, 7 assists).
Since his NHL debut in 2003-04, Plekanec has amassed 254 points (103 goals, 151 assists) in 393 NHL regular season games. The 5-11, 197-pound forward has also recorded 214 penalty minutes and maintained a +25 plus/minus differential. Plekanec has scored 27 goals on the powerplay and eight shorthanded goals. He has also accumulated 24 points (8 goals, 16 assists) in 40 career NHL playoff contests.
A native of a Kladno, Czech republic, Plekanec was selected in the third round, 71st overall by the Canadiens at the 2001 NHL Entry Draft. He was part of the Czech Republic team in the 2010 Vancouver Olympic Winter Games