The Pittsburgh Penguins were able to avoid salary arbitration with restricted free agent forward Conor Sheary on Sunday by agreeing to terms on a three-year contract that will pay him a total of $9 million, the team announced.
Sheary is the last of the Penguins’ restricted free agents while his signing comes a week after the team locked up its other key RFA, defenseman Brian Dumoulin.
He is coming off of a breakout season with the Penguins that saw him score 23 goals and add 30 assists in 61 games.
He spent much of the season playing alongside Sidney Crosby (after doing the same in the playoffs a year ago) and seemed to form an instant chemistry with him and later in the season rookie forward Jake Guentzel.
Sheary did most of his production during even-strength play where he was one of the most productive players in the league on a per-minute basis.
Signed as an undrafted free agent and overcoming the “undersized” label that has followed him around he has developed into a core player for a two-time Stanley Cup champion.
If he can come close to duplicating his performance from this past season that $3 million salary cap hit is going to be a great value for the Penguins.
With him and Dumoulin now signed the Penguins still have a little more than $3.2 million in salary cap space remaining. Their next order of business will continue to be searching for a third-line center to replace Nick Bonino after he signed with the Nashville Predators as a free agent.