- James Murphy, Bruins reporter, ESPNBoston.com
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The Boston Bruins signed 18-year-old Tyler Seguin, the second overall pick in the 2010 NHL entry draft, to an entry-level contract, the Bruins announced Tuesday.
Terms of the deal were not released by the team, but sources said it is similar to the three-year deal top pick Taylor Hall signed with the Edmonton Oilers last month. That contract includes the maximum base salary of $900,000 per season, and bonuses that could max out at $3.75 million annually.
Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli noted that the negotiations were relatively uncomplicated because of the slotting for rookie contracts. After watching Seguin go through the development camp, the team decided it was ready to commit.
"We felt it was time to sign Tyler," Chiarelli said.
Seguin, a 6-foot-1, 172-pound forward, played the past two seasons with the Plymouth Whalers in the Ontario Hockey League (OHL).
In 2009-10, Seguin led the OHL in scoring, sharing the title with Hall, with 48 goals and 58 assists for 106 points in 63 games.
Chiarelli said that Seguin, who played center in juniors, fits in best at wing right now on the Bruins. Boston already has four centers in Marc Savard, David Krejci, Patrice Bergeron and newly acquired Gregory Campbell.
"But you never know," Chiarelli said. "I've had discussions with [coach Claude Julien] about mixing and matching."
Chiarelli said the team was ready to proceed without buying out any players.
"We have the ability right now to ice a team, and it's a good team," Chiarelli said. "It's a roster that I'm very happy with right now. There are some spots for some young players to earn spots."
Not including the 7.5-percent bonus buffer, which applies Seguin's bonuses to the 2011-12 cap until Seguin meets them, and the Bruins' plans to put injured forward Marco Sturm on long-term injury reserve, the Bruins are over the 2010-11 NHL salary cap of $59.4 million and the "summer cap" that allows them to go 10 percent above the season cap to $65.3 million until one week before the season begins. According to capgeek.com, the Bruins' cap hit currently stands at $66.28 million.
Despite being signed to his entry-level contract, the Bruins will have a nine-game grace period once the season starts to decide whether to keep Seguin in the NHL. If they decide after that to send him back to Plymouth in the Ontario Hockey League, Seguin's salary will not count against the cap.
Many believe it is a given that Seguin will be a fixture in the Bruins lineup this season, but Chiarelli did stress that the possible future superstar will have to prove himself in camp and this season to stay in Boston.
"Nothing has changed to make me more comfortable or not from when I last saw him," Chiarelli said. "My position is the same. I'd like to see how he does in camp. He's a terrific young player and I feel like he's going to open some eyes in camp, but let's wait and see."
James Murphy has covered the Bruins and the NHL for the past eight seasons. Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
The Boston Bruins and Tyler Seguin agreed on a contract, sources said.