Photo: NBC Sports Washington
OFFICIAL: DSP IS #ALLCAPS
— Washington Capitals (@Capitals) June 28, 2018
Pierre LeBrun of the Athletic reported on Wednesday night when there were reports Smith-Pelly agreed to a contract in Washington, that he received better offers from two other teams but wanted to re-sign with the Capitals.
Hearing that @smithpelly23 has agreed to return to the Caps on a one-year deal. Believe that he turned down more lucrative offers from two other teams but wanted to stay with the Cup champs who are tight vs the salary cap
— Pierre LeBrun (@PierreVLeBrun) June 27, 2018
Smith-Pelly, 26, was not offered a qualifying offer from the Capitals when they were due at 5 PM on Monday night. He could have become an unrestricted free agent on Sunday.
After Smith-Pelly tallied four goals and nine points in 53 games with the New Jersey Devils in 2016-17, the team bought out the final year of his contract on June 30, 2017. He signed a one-year, two-way contract worth $650,000 with the Capitals on July 3, 2017.
It was uncertain if Smith-Pelly would even make the Capitals’ roster out of training camp but made the team after posting two goals and four points in five preseason games.
One year, $1M. https://t.co/sz3y5OotcH
— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) June 27, 2018
Smith-Pelly scored seven goals and 16 points in 75 games with the Capitals during the regular season, primarily playing on the fourth line with center Jay Beagle and winger Chandler Stephenson. He also averaged 1:14 of ice time per game on the penalty kill. Smith-Pelly also got some time on the top line with Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom/Evgeny Kuznetsov.
Smith-Pelly had his showing out party in the postseason, matching his regular season goal total of seven goals. He had eight points in 24 playoff games. Smith-Pelly was one of the Capitals unsung playoff heroes, scoring many key goals such as the series-clinching goal against the Columbus Blue Jackets in Round 1, a huge goal in Game 6 against the Tampa Bay Lightning to extend a 1-0 lead in the third period, and the game-tying goal in the Capitals’ Stanley Cup-clinching victory in Game 5 against the Vegas Golden Knights. He scored three goals in the final against the Golden Knights.
Since entering the league in 2012-13, Smith-Pelly has bounced around the league, getting traded twice in addition to being bought out.
In 341 career NHL games, Smith-Pelly has 40 goals, 93 points, and a -35 rating.
By Harrison Brown