Smith, Predators agree to five-year, $21.25 million extension

The Nashville Predators took a big step toward solidifying their offense by signing center Craig Smith to a five-year, $21.25 million contract on Monday.

The sides came to an agreement after a salary arbitration hearing on Monday, as first reported by Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman. Smith will receive $3.75 million in the first year of the contract before picking up an additional $250,000 in each subsequent season.

"As evidenced by his back-to-back 20-goal seasons and performance in the 2015 Stanley Cup playoffs, Craig Smith is an integral part of our team’s young core and we are pleased to have agreed on a long-term contract that both parties are comfortable with,” Predators president David Poile said in a statement. 

"With Craig’s durability, work ethic and intensity, we see him continuing the build on his recent production and be a valuable contributor to our offensive attack for the next five seasons."

Smith finished tied for second on the team with 23 goals in 82 games last season, falling one tally short of his career-best mark set during 2013-14. The 25-year-old, who also had 21 assists in 2014-15, added two goals and set up three others during Nashville’s first-round loss to Chicago.



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