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Rangers send Zherdev into unrestricted free agency

NHL.com @NHL

NEW YORK (AP) -The New York Rangers are making young forward Nikolai Zherdev an unrestricted free agent after walking away from the $3.9 million arbitration award he was given.

The Rangers had until Tuesday to accept the figure for next season or let him go. Zherdev reportedly sought $4.5 million in arbitration after the Rangers made a $3.25 million qualifying offer.

An arbitrator awarded Zherdev $3.9 million on Sunday.

The 24-year-old Zherdev played in all 82 games last season, his only one with the Rangers, and had 23 goals and 35 assists for 58 points - second on the team to Nik Antropov, who came over from Toronto at the trade deadline.

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