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Sam Gagner, Oilers avoid arbitration with three-year, $14.4 million deal

By Brian Stubits | Hockey writer

Sam Gagner had 14 goals and was second on the Oilers with 38 points last season. (USATSI)
Sam Gagner had 14 goals and was second on the Oilers with 38 points last season. (USATSI)

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Just before Sam Gagner and the Edmonton Oilers entered an arbitration hearing, the two sides agreed to a new contract without the help of the mediators to keep the forward in Edmonton.

The contract, as announced by the Oilers, is for three seasons. According to Nick Kypreos of Sportsnet it is worth $14.4 million, or $4.8 million per season. Per Ryan Rishaug, the deal also includes a no-movement clause.

When you consider Gagner was going into arbitration seeking $5.5 million and it eats up two of his unrestricted free-agency years, that's a pretty good deal for the Oilers. If he were to get to the open market he probably would have been able to command a little more so eating up those two UFA years at $4.8 million per looks awfully nice. At the same time they are paying a guy who hasn't had 50 points in a season more than he should get.

Gagner is still young, although it feels like he has been around forever, and started to hit another gear in the lockout-shortened 2013 season. He had 14 goals and 24 assists in the 48 games, numbers that put him on pace to go well above his career highs.

Gagner was selected sixth overall by the Oilers in the 2007 draft, sticking with the big club since he was drafted. He seems pretty happy to have a new deal.

 
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