After being selected by the Vegas Golden Knights in the 2017 Expansion Draft, selected by the Vegas Golden Knights in the 2017 Expansion Draft, defenseman Nate Schmidt was in need of a new contract as a pending restricted free agent. After negotiations proved unsuccessful in getting a new deal done, the Golden Knights and Schmidt were forced to go to arbitration, where Schmidt was awarded a new two-year deal.
Per Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman, Schmidt was awarded a two-year, $4.45 million deal, which will pay him $2.15 million this season and $2.3 million next season, with an average annual value of $2.25 million . Prior to arbitration, the Golden Knights were seeking a two-year contract with a total value of $1.95 million, while Schmidt was seeking a one-year, $2.75 million deal. With the two-year contract, the 26-year old is now eligible for unrestricted free agency in July 2019.
Arbitrator awards Nate Schmidt two years at a $2.25M AAV
— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) August 5, 2017
League source: Nate Schmidt (Vegas) arbitration award:
— Craig Morgan (@craigsmorgan) August 5, 2017
One of many defensemen selected by Vegas in the Expansion Draft, Schmidt is one of the more offensive-minded of the group, as he recorded 17 points (three goals, 14 assists) in 60 games played. In the Stanley Cup Playoffs, Schmidt played in 11 games, scoring once and adding three assists while averaging 16:39 minutes of ice time a game. Schmidt’s new contract is the first settled by an arbitration hearing in two years.
The Golden Knights now have 48 hours to accept the ruling or walk away, which would make Schmidt an unrestricted free agent.
By Michael Fleetwood