Following a busy offseason to this point, the Flyers have just 10 players under contract beyond the 2021-22 season. One of the players on an expiring contract has a new deal in place though, and it is arguably the most important piece they had to sign ahead of the following season.

The Flyers have signed Sean Couturier to an eight-year contract extension worth $62 million, an average annual value of $7.75 million. The contract will take effect starting with the 2022-23 season.

Couturier, 28, had 18 goals and 41 points in 45 games last season, leading the team with 0.91 points per game. Couturier has also led the Flyers with 118 goals, 95 even-strength goals, 21 game-winning goals, and 197 even-strength points over the last five seasons.

"We are excited to announce Sean's long term extension with the Flyers today," GM Chuck Fletcher said in a release. "As one of the premier two-way centers in the NHL, Sean has the rare talent to shut down opposing team's top players while also contributing at a high offensive level. Throughout his 10 year career with the Flyers, he has proven to be the ultimate teammate. He carries an enormous presence inside our dressing room due to his preparation, determination and drive to win."

"To be part of the Flyers organization for another eight years following next year is extremely exciting," Couturier said in a release. "I like the way the team is built and the mix of players that we have. I'm really looking forward to it but especially this year. We've made a lot of changes, but it's all positive and very exciting."

In his 10-year career, Couturier has 174 goals and 269 assists for 443 points in 692 games. He also has 22 career playoff points over 39 games. Couturier has also been a two-time Selke Trophy finalist, winning the award in 2020.

By signing Couturier, it essentially already crosses of the most important task of next offseason. Keeping Couturier around was going to be critical for the Flyers, and getting this deal done now at this cap hit certainly allows Fletcher and company to better forecast next offseason moving forward. Flyers captain Claude Giroux is among the players that have expiring contracts after this upcoming season.

It all continues Fletcher’s offseason of action. Now in addition to bringing in multiple new additions, he has secured a key piece of the team’s future for years to come.

Kevin Durso is Flyers insider for 97.3 ESPN and Flyers editor for Follow him on Twitter @Kevin_Durso.

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