The Buffalo Sabres have locked up center Dylan Cozens with a seven-year contract extension, worth $7.1 million AAV. Cozens’ extension, which was formally announced by the team Tuesday, just days after Chad DeDominicis of Expected Buffalo reported that the two sides had made ‘good progress’ on a deal.
Per CapFriendly, Cozens’ deal includes a $2 million signing bonus in the first year (with $5.1 million in salary). It also includes a five-team no-trade clause for the last three years.
All things considered, this deal looks like a good one upfront for the Sabres. GM Kevyn Adams has locked up another key piece of the the team’s offense at a decent price and long term, not unlike his earlier deal with Tage Thompson.
Having the team’s top two centers locked up down the line gives the team a bit of structure going forward and players to build around. The NHL salary cap is also projected to rise over the next few seasons, which means Cozens’ deal will carry even less weight as it goes on.
Also, like Thompson’s deal, it’s massive upgrade for the player. Adams took a gamble on Thompson, and that’s certainly paid off before the extension has even set in. He’s doing the same with 21-year-old Cozens, who is having a phenomenal season & has already set career highs in goals, assists and points, with a fair amount of hockey still to be played. Cozens has 43 points, including 17 goals, in just 49 games this season.
With the Cozens extension, the Sabres have:
- Alex Tuch locked up through 2025-26 ($4.75 million AAV)
- Jeff Skinner locked up through 2026-27 ($9 million AAV)
- Tage Thompson ($7.14 mil AAV), Mattias Samuelsson ($4.285 mil AAV) & Dylan Cozens ($7.1 mil AAV) locked up through 2028-29
The next logical step, it seems, would be to get defenseman Rasmus Dahlin lined up with a contract extension. Dahlin’s current deal carries an AAV of $6 million and runs through the 2023-24 season.