Vancouver Canucks re-sign Zack Kassian; 2 years and $3.5 million
The Vancouver Canucks have re-signed Zack Kassian, keeping the restricted free agent and power forward in B.C. for the foreseeable future.
NHL.com reports the deal is a two-year contract worth $3.5 million, with an annual cap hit of $1.75 million.
"Zack is a skilled, young player and an important member of this team," said Canucks general manager Jim Benning, in a team press release. "He has the ability to impact a game both with his talent and size. We look forward to seeing him continue to develop as a Canuck."
Last year, Kassian had 29 points in 73 games on a struggling Canucks team. The winger spent most of his time in the bottom six and failed to garner substantial minutes under then-head coach John Tortorella.
In his final 17 games, Kassian head 12 points playing mostly with center Brad Richardson and now-departed winger David Booth in the Canucks' third or fourth line.
"He broke out offensively in the second half of the season," wrote The Province reporter Jason Botchford on Thursday. "It's time for him to get a shot in the top six. Will it happen?"
Botchford reported that the Canucks were likely trying to sign Kassian for $1.3 million per season, while the winger's camp wanted something "north of $2 million" going forward.
Kassian came to the Vancouver Canucks in 2012 from the Buffalo Sabres, who received Cody Hodgson in the trade.
Vancouver still has to re-sign blossoming defenceman Chris Tanev, who is also a restricted free agent and was one of the team's top four defencemen last season, if not its most consistent.
Tanev played last year for $1.5 million, no doubt expecting his play to earn him a substantial raise.
Vancouver now has roughly $5 million in cap space, which has dwindled down from $17 million in the past few days with the signings of Kassian, Radim Vrbata, and goalie Ryan Miller.