Evaluating Brayden Schenn’s next contract

Brayden Schenn is in the middle of his fifth season with the Flyers since being acquired from the Los Angeles Kings prior to the 2011-12 season. The 24 year old has consistently seen an increase his production each year and is on pace to surpass the 50 point mark this season. In what is seemingly going to be his 2nd 20-goal season, the RFA (restricted free agent) forward is up for a new contract and it’s hard to think that Ron Hextall hasn’t already been in talks with his agent.

Brayden

Photo credit: AP Photo/Paul Vernon

The season did not start out how he, or anyone, expected. After scoring 5 goals and assisting on 2 others in he first 15 games of the season, he was scratched in a game against the Hurricanes after head coach Dave Hakstol was unhappy with his play in previous games. An injury to Ryan White in that game opened up a spot for Schenn again, who was placed on the top unit with Claude Giroux and Jakub Voracek. After that line failed to put points up, and Hakstol decided to move Voracek onto the fourth line with Chris VandeVelde and Pierre-Edouard Bellemare, it gave Schenn the opportunity to play the right wing, a position in which he has stated that he is most comfortable in. Since then, Brayden has been placed on the right side of many different line combinations and seems to be playing the best hockey of his career to date. Let’s use another similar player to compare Schenn and his next contract to; 2012 Jakub Voracek.

Coming off a 18 goal, 49 point season, the Flyers signed Voracek, 22 at the time, to a 4-year contract with an AAV (average annual value) of $4.250M, an amount that Schenn could see come his way. Most forwards seem to hit their prime somewhere around 23-26 and Schenn, 24, is right in the middle of that window. If Schenn stays on his current pace, they’ll end up with similar points at the end of the season, but how do they compare in other metrics?

bschjvor

The Warrior charts provided by ownthepuck are a great visual tool to compare their production at the time of their contracts expiring and, unsurprisingly, the only category that Schenn surpasses Voracek in is time on ice. While I do want the Flyers to retain Schenn and think they could get a deal done for a 2-3 year contract with an AAV similar to 2012 Voracek, should they? Last season the RFA offer sheet compensation was as follows:

  • Less than $1,205,377 = Nothing
  • $1,205,377-to-$1,826,328 = Third round pick
  • $1,826,328-to-$3,652,659 = Second round pick
  • $3,652,659-to-$5,478,986 = First round pick & two third round picks
  • $5,478,986-to-$7,305,316 = First round pick, second round pick, & two third round picks
  • $7,305,316-to-$9,131,645 = Two first round picks, second round pick, & two third round picks
  • $9,131,645 + = Four first round picks

If this next off-season has similar compensation amounts, it’d be interesting to see if a team would submit an offer sheet to Schenn within the $3,652,659-to-$5,478,986 range which, if the Flyers agreed not to match the offer, would award them with a first round pick and two third round picks. The Flyers, who, surprisingly aren’t hard pressed against the salary cap, have a big choice to make. Has his progression this season been enough that he can acquire more than a 1st round pick & two third round picks in a trade or if he has now played himself into the long-term plans. If it were up to me, as long as Schenn doesn’t want more than $5,000,000 per season, I’d like to see him back in Philadelphia.

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