Canadiens sign Caufield to extension
>> Cole Caufield picked up the phone and called his mother after agreeing to a lucrative extension with the Montreal Canadiens.
She couldn’t answer because she was busy at work, teaching. But once she called him back, the two shared a moment over the amount of money that’s not just lifechanging for Caufield, but for his family, too.
“She was excited, started crying on the phone. It’s really so special for me and my family,” he said during a video call with reporters. “They couldn’t be more proud, and I couldn’t be more thankful for what they’ve done.
“I’m just … I’m at a loss for words sometimes just thinking about it.”
The Canadiens signed Caufield to an eight-year, $62.8 million contract extension on Monday, completing a key piece of offseason business.
Caufield, who said he couldn’t even have dreamed of a number such as that as a kid, wanted to sign long term instead of opting for a bridge deal both to have his family “set for a while” and because of how much he loves playing in Montreal.
“The way this organization is going, the plan that’s intact, all that stuff, it makes a lot of sense,” he said. “I love being there, (it’s my) second home, first home, whatever you want to call it for me. I think it puts my family in a good place as well, all those things that kind of went into this final number and years.
“I’m very excited and very lucky to be a part of the Montreal Canadiens for a long time.”
The deal will pay the 22-year-old winger an average annual value of $7.85 million through the 2030-31 season. It’s the second-richest contract for a forward in Canadiens history, trailing captain Nick Suzuki’s eight-year pact by $200,000.
Caufield said he and the team understood that Suzuki would remain the highest-paid forward on the team.
“I mean, that’s our guy, that’s our leader,” said Caufield. “I think everyone around knows that, and (I) still have a lot of money, so I’m not complaining about anything.
“I’m excited and proud to be a part of this, and to do it with him along the way will be pretty special.”
With Suzuki signed through 2029-30, Montreal has two franchise cornerstones locked up for the foreseeable future.
Caufield didn’t have any spectacular plans regarding how he’ll celebrate his new contract.