The New York Rangers avoided arbitration by re-signing restricted free agent forward Kevin Hayes to a one-year contract, the team announced Monday.
Hayes, 26, will earn $5.125 million next season, according to multiple reports. He is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent next summer. An arbitration hearing had been scheduled for Thursday.
The four-year veteran has averaged more than 18 goals in his four NHL seasons, all with the Rangers. Hayes scored a career-high 25 goals last season with 19 assists in 76 games.
Per several reports, Hayes had been negotiating with the Rangers in hopes of landing a long-term extension. However, the New York Post and The Athletic speculated last weekend that if the 6-foot-5 forward and the team could not agree on a multiyear deal, Hayes likely will become a trade asset dangled at the trade deadline in February.
--The Nashville Predators retained restricted free agent forward Miikka Salomaki with a two-year, $1.5 million deal.
Salomaki, 25, has eight goals and 11 assists in 125 goals over parts of four seasons with the Predators. He had eight points (two goals, six assists) in 58 games last season.
A second-round pick in the 2011 NHL Draft, Salomaki has one goal and one assist in 28 career playoffs games, as well.
--The Columbus Blue Jackets have signed first-round draft pick Liam Foudy to a three-year, entry-level contract.
The 6-foot Foudy was the No. 18 overall selection in the 2018 draft. A forward, he scored 40 points on 24 goals and 16 assists in 65 games for London of the Ontario Hockey League in the 2017-18 season.
The 18-year-old has scored 55 points (33 goals, 22 assists) in 123 career OHL games.
--Field Level Media