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Jacob Trouba agrees to terms with Jets

Restricted free agent defenseman gets two-year contract

by Scott Billeck / Correspondent

WINNIPEG -- Restricted free agent defenseman Jacob Trouba agreed to terms on a two-year contract with the Winnipeg Jets on Monday.

The 22-year-old will make $2.5 million this season and $3.5 million in 2017-18.

General manager Kevin Cheveldayoff said Trouba will fill a void in the lineup for the Jets, who are 5-7-1 and without injured defensemen Tyler Myers (lower body) and Mark Stuart (lower body).

"It's obviously something that we're very excited to be able to announce today," Cheveldayoff said. "Obviously, a lot of work goes into these types of things. … Today, we were able to come to terms.

"Jacob means a great deal to our organization. These things take time. We're very excited about this announcement and moving forward, putting everything that has happened or was said behind us."

Trouba had requested a trade from Winnipeg on Sept. 24.

At the time, Trouba said he had asked for a trade as early as May. A statement from his agent, Kurt Overhardt, said Trouba was disgruntled after not seeing time on his favored right side and wanted to go elsewhere to "realize his true potential as a right-handed defenseman."

The Jets selected Trouba with the ninth pick in the 2012 NHL Draft. He has played 211 NHL games over three seasons in Winnipeg. Last season, Trouba had six goals, 21 points and a plus-10 rating in 81 games.

Cheveldayoff said he met with Overhardt at the Jets game at the Detroit Red Wings on Friday. Trouba had been training in Detroit.

"He's a hockey player, he wants to play hockey," Cheveldayoff said. "I'm glad he has this opportunity now to continue that process."

Cheveldayoff said he hopes to have Trouba in the lineup Tuesday against the visiting Dallas Stars, but he acknowledged that might be too soon. Trouba hasn't played since the World Cup of Hockey 2016, when he had two shots on goal and a minus-1 rating in two games for Team North America.

Trouba wasn't made available to the media, and Overhardt declined to comment on his client's contract.

Cheveldayoff said Trouba is popular in the locker room and should be welcomed back with open arms by his teammates. During training camp, several Jets expressed their desire to see Trouba re-sign with Winnipeg.

"Everybody that is in this game knows there's a business side to the game," Cheveldayoff said. "There's the contracts, the [collective bargaining agreement], all of the things that make the game tick are there. When players are in the dressing room, that's their family, that's their team. When someone is out for whatever reason, those are things that teams deal with. But certainly within the room, I think he will be welcomed back and it's going to be an exciting time to continue our building process.

"I think the things that brought the fans toward liking him in his first three years, I think you're going to see those things occur again."

Cheveldayoff outlined where his team has missed Trouba the most.

"He's a young player here that can play a lot of minutes and can do a lot of different things from a playing standpoint," Cheveldayoff said. "Getting Jacob back, once he rounds into form here, that will certainly help us to continue to improve with the young players we have in the lineup."

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