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Ryan Nugent-Hopkins staying with the Oilers on an 8-year contract

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins is staying put.

The Edmonton Oilers confirmed they’re keeping the 28-year-old assistant captain on Tuesday.

The Oilers and Nugent-Hopkins have agreed to an eight-year contract worth $41 million. That’s an average annual value of $5.125 million.

The deal reportedly includes a no-movement clause, though the Oilers didn’t specify that in the new release Tuesday morning.

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“It’s always been my goal to be able to stay in Edmonton,” said Nugent-Hopkins. “The team is progressing the way we want it to. I want to be a part of that. The biggest reason I want to stay is I want to win in Edmonton.”

Nugent-Hopkins has played his entire 10-year career with the Oilers since being drafted first overall in 2011. He’s coming off a season which saw him post 35 points in 52 games.

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He also appeared in four playoff games, registering two points.

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Nugent-Hopkins can play centre and left wing and is on the power play and the penalty kill. That versatility has made him a valuable player.

“If we would have lost Nuge, it would have been a massive loss,” said general manager Ken Holland.

“When your GM is saying those things, it’s nice to hear,” Nugent-Hopkins said. “I wanted to establish myself as a good two-way player in this league and be versatile.”

The six-foot, 184-pound forward finished third on Oilers power plays with nine, and fourth in power play points with 20 in the 2020-21 season.

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In the last four seasons, he has finished in the top four on the team in both categories.

Nugent-Hopkins could have become a free agent on July 28 as his six-year, $36-million contract was coming to an end.

“If Ryan goes to market on July 28, I have no doubt in my mind he’s getting a cap hit north of what he got today,” said Holland. “He wants to be an Oiler his entire career.”

— With files from Kirby Bourne, 630 CHED

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