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Connor Bedard could earn up to $4.45 million this season

It’s now been almost three weeks since Connor Bedard was selected at the very top of the draft. The forward, seen as a generational prospect, has joined the Chicago Blackhawks and will be looking to lift the club out of the bottom half of the standings.

However, there was some speculation as to when he would sign his NHL entry-level contract, which had still not been done. It was finally settled today, when he took advantage of his 18th birthday to sign his first pact on the Bettman circuit.

Like the other first-round picks, Bedard’s cap hit will be $950,000 for all three seasons. For a guy like Bedard, this will quickly become a bargain and he should produce well beyond his salary.

But even if he only has a salary of $855,000 and a guaranteed signing bonus of $95,000, there’s also a scenario in which Bedard will earn no less than $4.45 million this season: that’s if he receives the full performance bonus on his contract.

Bedard’s contract (like many entry-level contracts) includes two types of performance bonuses: Type A bonuses and Type B bonuses. Basically, each Type A bonus is worth $250,000 (and he can receive up to four), while the Type B bonus is a single bonus (which, in Bedard’s case, is worth $2.5 million).

Type A bonuses include the 20-goal plateau, the 35-assist plateau, the 60-point plateau, being named to the All-Rookie team at the end of the year, being selected for the All-Star Game and being the MVP of the All-Star Game.

And clearly, the bookies seem to believe in his chances, especially when it comes to goals.

Otherwise, if he plays at least 42 games, other possibilities are added: being in the top-6 of his team’s forwards for average playing time, being in the top-3 of his team’s forwards for +/- differential and scoring 0.73 points per game.

If he achieves four of these marks (which seems quite likely), he’ll get the $1 million in Type A bonuses to which he’s entitled.

For Type B bonuses (and the $2.5 million that comes with them), however, he’ll have to be among the NHL’s top forwards. Bedard will have to be among the league’s top-10 forwards in goals, assists or points. And if he plays at least 42 games, he can also be in the top-10 for points per game.

If he is named to one of the two All-Star teams at the end of the season, or if he wins the Hart Trophy, Maurice-Richard Trophy, Selke Trophy or Conn-Smythe Trophy, he will also be entitled to the $2.5 million.

We’re talking about much more improbable plateaus, but he only needs to reach one of them to collect all the money.

In short, even though Bedard has only $950,000 in guaranteed money for this year, he has the potential to make quite a bit more. And even if he gets the full $4.45 million, it’ll still be quite a bargain in Chicago.

In a gaggle

– Speaking of Bedard.

– Good question.

– The Golden Goal, clearly.

– Logical.

– Ridiculous.

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