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Pens sign Spaling — two years, $4.4 million

Jul 31, 2014, 10:22 AM EDT

Nashville Predators v Edmonton Oilers Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Penguins have come to terms on a two-year, $4.4 million contract with forward Nick Spaling, avoiding arbitration with the newly acquired 25-year-old in the process.

Spaling’s case was scheduled to be heard today. Only P.K. Subban still has an arbitration hearing scheduled (for tomorrow).

One of the two pieces (the other being Patric Hornqvist) that came to Pittsburgh in the James Neal trade with the Nashville, Spaling had 13 goals and 19 assists in 71 games for the Predators last season. With the Penguins, it’s hoped he’ll provide some much-needed depth to a team that couldn’t get out of the second round in 2014, even with Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin.

Upon trading Neal, Pittsburgh general manager Jim Rutherford called Spaling a “very versatile player” who was a “very important” part of the deal.

With Spaling’s contract done, Rutherford’s focus should now turn to restricted free agent Brandon Sutter, who did not file for arbitration.

  1. pitpenguinsrulez - Jul 31, 2014 at 10:25 AM

    So how much is left for Sutter?

    • jpelle82 - Jul 31, 2014 at 10:46 AM

      I believe they had 6.4 before this….

      • rmccleary97 - Jul 31, 2014 at 11:01 AM

        6.4 before Spaling and Sutter, but with 2 more roster spots to fill. Figure those two at the league minimum ($550,000 this year), and we’re talking about $3,130,833 for Sutter. If you’re giving him more than that, it means carrying fewer than 23 on the roster.

        It also takes $2.2 million off of what’s available for next year; the Pens now have about $44.7 million put toward 10 players – none of which are a goalie.

  2. steelpenbucs87 - Jul 31, 2014 at 10:34 AM

    $2.2 Million was too much for Spalling. Cheaper options to be had on the FA market.

    I would imagine Sutter is going to get $3.5M + which is a bit North of what I think is right as well. Brings a solid offseason for the Pens down a bit.

    • hockey412 - Jul 31, 2014 at 10:42 AM

      Spaling out-performed Sutter last year in almost every category…so it’s hard to knock this. I’m just glad they are investing in a young guy that could potentially fill a big hole for them. There are always cheaper options, but that might just perpetuate the depth issues.

      • jpelle82 - Jul 31, 2014 at 11:34 AM

        I’m about over the sutter thing, this deal being done just helps solidify my feelings about it. the more I’ve thought it through the more i wish they would traded him already. apparently edmonton is drooling over him

  3. plazzman - Jul 31, 2014 at 10:39 AM

    Wow! I’m surprised he got that much. Wouldn’t have gone more than 2 mil a year for him.

    • hockey412 - Jul 31, 2014 at 10:46 AM

      You’d do $2M for one year, but not $2.2M for 2?

      • plazzman - Jul 31, 2014 at 11:17 AM

        I never said 2 million for one year. I said I wouldn’t hae gone more than 2 million per year. Although 400,000 may not seem like much, when a team is up against the cap, it can make a huge difference.

      • hockey412 - Jul 31, 2014 at 11:23 AM

        Not criticizing, just clarifying. If they were willing to give him $2M/year (which is kind of in the middle of where both sides were, going in), then I can see him pulling an extra $400k for the extra year. I like this kid, so I like the deal – I’d pay $2.2M for what he’s contributed the past two years.

  4. jhmiddleton81 - Jul 31, 2014 at 11:21 AM

    As a Leafs fan they should have got Winnick too for cheap

  5. jpelle82 - Jul 31, 2014 at 11:29 AM

    pretty stoked about this deal and as long as hornquist just does what he does this neal trade might swing in the pens favor as far as production lost/gained. pens definitely win in the character gained department. its always hard to replace 40 goal potential from a guy like neal but I think those 2 guys can do it this year as long as they are healthy.

  6. hines86for6 - Jul 31, 2014 at 3:21 PM

    One of my favorite guys with the Preds. Really good forechecker who will give you good PK minutes. Also, 13 goals isn’t nothing. He will be missed.

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