Doug Hamilton lands six-year deal from Flames days after Bruins trade

Former Boston Bruins defenseman Dougie Hamilton took the high road publicly when asked Tuesday about his trade and subsequent long-term contract with the Calgary Flames.

The 22-year-old blueliner entered this offseason as a restricted free agent, and when it appeared he was close to a deal to re-sign with the Bruins, Boston general manager Don Sweeney traded Hamilton's rights to the Flames on Friday in exchange for Calgary's 15th, 45th and 52nd overall picks in this year's draft.

On Tuesday, the Flames signed Hamilton to a six-year deal worth $34.5 million, sources said, which is comparable to what the Bruins offered him. Hamilton will earn $5.5 million per year the next two seasons, $5.75 million each of the following two years, and then $6 million per year the last two seasons each.

"It's an exciting day for the Calgary Flames," said general manager Brad Treliving, who added that the sides began working on a new contract immediately after Friday's trade.

Hamilton wouldn't say why things broke down in Boston.

"I don't know," he said on a conference call. "I don't really want to talk about the past too much. I enjoyed my time there. Right now, for me, all my excitement is about the future. The last couple of days I've just been really excited about this new opportunity and being a Calgary Flame. It's just really exciting. I'm not really thinking about the past right now. I'm looking forward to getting to Calgary and starting a new chapter in my life."

When pressed further about clearing the air, Hamilton wouldn't budge.

"Again, for me it's just exciting to be a Flame," he said. "I'm just looking forward to getting to Calgary and playing. I'm looking at the team and the plan that they have there and everything and it's really exciting. I couldn't be happier."

Treliving quickly tried to dismiss recent reports that Hamilton was not liked by his Bruins teammates and that there were other issues that caused Boston and the talented young defenseman to part ways.

"There's been, in my mind, a lot of crap written here in the last little bit," Trevling said. "There's a lot of things that keep me up at night. The type of person that Dougie is, the type of teammate that he is, is not one of them. We do a lot of research in terms of the player on the ice, the personality. A big part of our success is the culture and the people we have here in Calgary. What makes us excited about this deal is not only the player we're getting, but the person we're getting. There has not been an ounce, or a calorie wasted in terms of worrying about the player.

"Everybody we've talked to [said] he's an excellent teammate. He's a bright young man and he is going to be a model citizen for our organization. I hope that puts to rest any of the noise and questions I've been asked over the last couple of days."

Bruins coach Claude Julien made it clear over the weekend how he feels about a younger player wanting more money or a bigger contract.

"As a coach, to be honest with you, I find it very unfortunate that players that have played maybe three years in the league all of a sudden are looking to be up there with the top-paid players," he said.

The coach said he prefers players work their way up to earn big contracts, but he added that Hamilton is within his rights wanting a better deal than what the Bruins offered.

"I'm not standing here blaming him at all," Julien said. "Would we have liked to keep him? We would've liked to have kept Dougie Hamilton. He's a good, promising young player, but you move on. We've moved on with others, and we have to move on in this situation as well."

The Bruins selected Hamilton in the first round (No. 9 overall) of the 2011 draft.

"I didn't know I was going to be a Flame until today, or when I was traded to them, so it's something that your life can change pretty quick," Hamilton said. "It's part of the business. I'm looking forward to it. I've heard a lot of good things."