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Ryan agrees to seven-year, $50.75 million extension

Ottawa Senators v Winnipeg Jets

WINNIPEG, MB - MARCH 8: Bobby Ryan #6 of the Ottawa Senators skates down the ice during warmup before an NHL game against the Winnipeg Jets at the MTS Centre on March 8, 2014 in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. (Photo by Marianne Helm/Getty Images)

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The Ottawa Senators have announced that Bobby Ryan has agreed to a seven-year contract extension. It is worth $50.75 million, according to TSN’s Bob McKenzie.

That’s a big commitment to Ryan, especially seeing as he’s coming off of a rough season where he was bothered by a sports hernia and finished with 23 goals and 48 points in 70 games. At the same time, it’s a bold statement from Ottawa after some very public embarrassments over the past couple of years.

Long-time captain Daniel Alfredsson did the unthinkable in the summer of 2013 when he decided to leave Ottawa to sign with Detroit. What made that worse for the Senators was his claim that it was money that ultimately drove him away. They made Jason Spezza the new captain, but he demanded a trade and was shipped to Dallas in July.

Had they let Ryan walk as an unrestricted free agent, it would have continued the storyline of Ottawa’s inability to keep top-tier forwards on the roster. This contract will start in 2015-16 when Ryan is 28 years old and he will likely have the highest cap hit on the team at that point.

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