Adam Larsson has signed a six-year pact with the Devils. (Photo: GETTY IMAGES)
Defenseman Adam Larsson
, a restricted free agent, re-signed with the New Jersey Devils on Saturday, avoiding arbitration with a six-year, $25 million contract (an average annual value of $4,166,667).
Larsson was scheduled for arbitration on July 29. General manager Ray Shero said earlier this week he was confident a deal could be reached before the hearing.
"I think this is a good deal for both sides," Shero told Northjersey.com. "This is a young defenseman at 22 years old who is signed for a six-year term. Adam showed a commitment that he really wanted to be here, and we got him three years past the age of unrestricted free agency."
Larsson, 22, led New Jersey defensemen and had NHL career-highs in assists (21) and points (24) in 65 games last season, his fourth since coming to North America after being selected with the No. 4 pick in the 2011 NHL Draft.
He split the previous two seasons, 2012-13 and 2013-14, between New Jersey and the Albany Devils of the American Hockey League after spending all of the 2011-12 season with New Jersey, producing two goals and 18 points in 65 games.
"I think he's only scratched the surface of the kind of player he's going to be," Shero said. “There's a reason he was drafted when he was. He's got a lot of experience already. He's played a lot of ice time on the (penalty kill) and 5-on-5. He hasn't had the chance to play a lot on the power play, yet."
The native of Skelleftea, Sweden, spent two professional seasons with his hometown club, Skelleftea of the Swedish Hockey League, prior to being drafted.