Sharks star forward Tomas Hertl was re-signed by the San Jose Sharks on Wednesday, March 16 to an eight year contract worth 65.1 million. The contract is worth 8.1 million per year and has a no movement clause for the first three years and a modified no trade clause for the rest of the contract.
Hertl has been with the Sharks since getting drafted in 2012. He’s tied for first in goal scoring on the team this year and is second in points on the team only behind Timo Mier. Hertl was in the last year of a four year contract.
“It’s [good] to sign a nice long contract to be a franchise player and part of the Sharks,” Hertl said to NHL.com. “It’s an honor, but at the same time, I know what is coming with that. I’m one of the leaders and I have to make it better, so it’s challenging for me and I want to see every day, every year us getting better.”
Hertl and his contract has been a looming issue for the Sharks all throughout this season. Many trade rumors were thrown out in the past couple of months especially with the Sharks falling out of playoff contention.
“We’ve always been committed to signing him to this contract,” acting general manager Joe Will said to NHL.com. “It was [about being] fully committed to signing up here because we recognize the importance of the top-line center…“Tomas has evolved into a premier top-line centerman in the league, competing against the NHL’s best players every single night and delivering significant results…We are thrilled to have Tomas for another eight years.”
Hertl is now the highest paid forward on the team, beating out captain Logan Couture by $137,500. He’s second overall in highest paid on the team with defenseman Erik Karlsson leading the way.
Hertl is a fan favorite in San Jose and many rejoiced seeing him back as he’s made many favorable moments as a Shark.
“Just saw the post on Instagram and it feels more real now! I’m very happy, excited, and relieved,” said local fan and season ticket holder Aaron Convino.
The Sharks have missed the playoffs for the past two years and are poised to miss the playoffs for a third straight year. It would be a first in Sharks history. They currently sit eight points behind the Vegas Golden Knights for the second wild card spot with 26 wins, 25 losses, and eight overtime losses.
Hertl himself is excited to be back for eight more years with a tweet going out on his Twitter page when the contract was announced that simply had a smiley face.
“My heart was always with the Sharks,” Hertl told reporters.