The Vancouver Canucks are hoping to tie Alex Burrows to a contract extension, after confirming that they have opened new deal talks with the winger’s agent.
Assistant general manager, Laurence Gilman, said: "We’ve had preliminary discussions about extending Alex's contract but, beyond that, it's not our policy to discuss ongoing negotiations."
Burrows, who is about to start the final year of a four-year contract that pays him $2million a season, has been one of the Canucks’ star performers in recent years, scoring at least 25 goals in each of the last four seasons.
The 31-year-old’s most prolific season was in 2009-10, when he scored 35 goals and 67 points, but he still managed to contribute to NHL scores last season, netting 28 goals and 52 points for the Canucks.
"Alex is an important player on our team, both on the ice and in our dressing room," added Gilman. "If we can get him signed to a long-term deal that keeps him with us for a number of years, it would be a very good thing."
It is believed that the Canucks could be willing to offer Burrows a $4million-a-season deal that would put him on the same level as the likes of Wayne Simmonds, who recently signed a new six-year contract with the Philadelphia Flyers, Detroit forward, Johan Franzen, and New York Rangers winger, Ryan Callahan.
Meanwhile, the Canucks are still hoping to buy Shane Doan from Phoenix although the player is waiting to see how the Coyotes’ ownership situation develops before making a decision on his future.
Doan is believed to prefer to stay with Phoenix but has named the Canucks as his next best option if he does not re-sign with the Coyotes. If Vancouver do snap up Doan, it could have an impact on Burrows, who would then be forced to play on the second line with Ryan Kesler.
It could also have a major impact on the NHL standings, should Doan prove as prolific at the Canucks as he did at Phoenix.