Defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk signed a four-year, $26.6 million contract with the New York Rangers on Saturday.
Shattenkirk was seen as the top prize in this year’s class of NHL free agents and he was rewarded with a $6.65 million per year average.
Shattenkirk, who was acquired by the Capitals at last season’s trade deadline from the St. Louis Blues, was a longshot to return to Washington. The Capitals simply didn’t have the salary cap room to afford Shattenkirk, considering they prioritized re-signing their restricted free agents and T.J. Oshie.
Shattenkirk also wanted a bigger role on the blue line and he’ll get it in New York. The Rangers cleared cap room this summer, buying out defenseman Dan Girardi.
The Rangers also appealed to Shattenkirk because he is from New Rochelle, New York.
Shattenkirk had a career-high 56 goals (13 goals, 43 assists) last year.
The 28-year-old struggled in the playoffs playing next to Brooks Orpik, but settled in the Pittsburgh Penguins series when he was paired with Nate Schmidt. Shattenkirk scored a game-winning overtime goal in Game 3 of the Penguins series.
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