By CBSBoston.com Staff

BOSTON (CBS) — Charlie McAvoy is now going to be a member of the Boston Bruins for a long, long time. The 23-year-old defenseman was all smiles when chatting with reporters about his new eight-year extension with Boston on Friday.

Receiving the biggest deal that the Bruins have every handed out likely played a part in McAvoy’s endless grin. But he’s really just happy to be in Boston for the foreseeable future, a place that the Long Island native now calls home.

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“There is no place I’d rather be,” said McAvoy. “It’s such an emotional day and a bit of a whirlwind, but I couldn’t be happier right now.”

McAvoy’s smile grew even bigger when asked if this deal paves the way toward him spending his entire NHL career with the Boston Bruins.

“That was my goal and my vision,” he said. “My life, as of recent, is here in Boston. I moved here full-time; I’m here in the summer and I have my routines. It’s here year-round.

“I love it here,” he added. “I love the city, the people, the fans. It’s home for me and where I feel like I belong, where I want to be.”

He made sure to thank anyone and everyone he knew that helped him reach this point. From family to the Jacobs family to Don Sweeney and Bruce Cassidy to his Bruins teammates, McAvoy voiced his gratitude for all of them.

The blue liner had one more year left on his previous deal, and Boston was wise to make sure such an impactful young talent will be one of the faces of the franchise for the next nine years. It was also important for McAvoy to get the deal done before the puck drops on Boston’s 2021-22 season Saturday night.

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“It was something we wanted to do, something both parties were trying to do. Every talk was positive and getting toward an end goal,” he said. “We were able to get there today and now I get to do what I love, which is play hockey. There is no stress around it. I get to come to work every day and do what I love.”

McAvoy first fell in love with Boston during his college career at Boston University. And after the Bruins drafted him with their first-round selection in 2016, it didn’t take him long to start making an impact for Boston’s NHL club. He debuted during the 2017 postseason, and has risen through the ranks ever since. Now he’s Boston’s top defenseman, and is well on his way to becoming one of the leaders of a team with Stanley Cup aspirations.

“The championship pedigree of Boston is something I have been so appreciative of and thankful for,” he said. “All I know is a championship expectation. I’m so thankful for that. That’s where you want to be and the dream is to win.

“To look across every year at everyone in the room and say we have a chance to do it is so special,” added McAvoy. “That is the expectation here and that’s what you want to be a part of.”

Now he’ll be part of it for a long, long time. And don’t worry about the big paydays going to his head, either. When it comes to his first big purchase after signing his extension, he isn’t going to buy anything flashy for himself.

His first purchase is actually going to a four-legged friend.

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“I might go get my dog a handful of bones,” McAvoy said with that giant smile. “Something like that for my guy.”

CBSBoston.com Staff