The Detroit Red Wings need to extend captain Dylan Larkin

The Detroit Red Wings are well engulfed in the offseason. While they do not have someone to coach the team and be the bench boss as things stand, there will be other hurdles for this offseason. General Manager (GM) Steve Yzerman has done an exceptional job since taking over in Hockeytown, but he’s got a busy offseason ahead.

Detroit Red Wings captain Dylan Larkin is due for a contract extension, and the team needs to hammer this out. While Larkin is technically under contract for the 2022-23 season and will be a free agent next summer, there’s no reason to beat around the bush with an extension.

He’s grown and matured as the Red Wings leader and looks like he can continue to get the job done in that role moving forward. In a recent move, Larkin switched up his representation for his sports agent, which could be hinting at the two sides starting to work on a deal.

While his season ended early due to an injury that required core muscle surgery, he’s expected to be healthy when training camp gets going and certainly be back into playing shape when the 2022-23 season rolls around. Larkin’s current contract carries the highest annual value on the team with a $6.1 million cap hit, and he’s due for another quality contract.

Detroit Red Wings need to prioritize an extension with Dylan Larkin.

Larkin’s settled in these past few seasons and started to look like he can not only be a leader but start putting up points. It does feel like Larkin is not the team’s breakout star center that will be a 1A guy like Connor McDavid or Auston Matthews. Instead, he’s bound to be a 1B player, but surrounded by other talents; he’s still going to be vital for the Red Wings.

He’s coming off the 2021-22 season, where he pieced together his second-best performance of his career. The Red Wings saw Larkin score 31 goals and 38 assists for 69 points over 71 games played. It’s the second time he’s broken the 30-goal mark and the first time he’s done it since the 2018-19 season.

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Larkin deserves a new deal. His last contract was a five-year contract worth $30.5 million overall. Looking at Larkin’s performance and job done as the team’s captain, there’s got to be speculation that he will get another multi-year deal to stick around.

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He’s the hometown kid, captain of his hometown team, and the 26-year-old has really grown up in recent years. He’s still playing with passion and fire as he did when he broke into the league, but he’s also learned to control that temper and flare at times, which only benefits the Red Wings in the long run.

As extension talks continue, the two sides are going to have to put a value on him. If I were to speculate, I could see Yzerman Larkin’s camp being around the six-year mark on a deal with a similar annual value to his past deal. A six-year, $36 million contract, possibly a little higher than that, seems like it would be on par for a Larkin extension.

There’s still time, but if the Red Wings are smart, they will get ahead and lock down Larkin before the season even starts. There may be plenty of time for Larkin and the Detroit Red Wings to work something out, but the pressure will mount as time ticks on.

If Yzerman were smart, he would be working on getting Larkin’s contract handled and knocking it off the to-do list.

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