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Winnipeg signs Pavelec to five-year, $19.5 million deal

Ondrej Pavelec

Winnipeg Jets goalie Ondrej Pavelec looks to the bench during the second period of an NHL hockey game against the Chicago Blackhawks in Chicago, Thursday, Oct. 13, 2011. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)


According to TSN’s Bob McKenzie, the Winnipeg Jets have signed RFA netminder Ondrej Pavelec to a five-year, $19.5 million deal.

The $3.9 million cap hit represents a large raise over the $1.15 million Pavelec was making, though it’s not surprising Winnipeg made such a big splash.

In June, reports surfaced that a KHL club made Pavelec a “big money” offer for one year (believed to be connecting with any potential NHL work stoppage.)

Pavelec, who is Czech, was said to be considering the offer.

That scuttlebutt appears to be a thing of the past, though, as the 24-year-old will be with Winnipeg for the foreseeable future. A huge move for the Jets, as Pavelec was arguably their MVP a year ago despite rather pedestrian numbers (29-28-9, 2.91 GAA, .906 save percentage.) He was one of the league’s busiest netminders, finishing fifth in shots faced, and was huge down the stretch as the Jets made an improbable playoff push.

The Pavelec deal will likely reverberate through the league. He’s the first of of a young crop of RFA goalies to secure a deal this summer, setting the stage for the likes of Carey Price, Tuukka Rask and Cory Schneider.