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Golden Knights Extend Ivan Barbashev for 5 Years, Replacing Reilly Smith

Vegas Golden Knights re-sign Ivan Barbashev to a 5-year, $5 million per season contract extension, prioritizing him over Reilly Smith.

The Vegas Golden Knights have made a significant move in their roster by re-signing Ivan Barbashev to a contract extension after trading Reilly Smith to the Pittsburgh Penguins. The team announced on Wednesday afternoon that Barbashev has agreed to a 5-year deal worth $5 million per season.

With limited cap space and the need to prioritize between Barbashev and Smith, the Golden Knights made the decision to secure Barbashev’s services for the long term. The contract extension matches Smith’s average annual value (AAV) and provides Barbashev with a substantial raise, reflecting his strong performance during the playoffs.

Related: Golden Knights Trade Reilly Smith to Penguins for 3rd-Round Pick

While there may have been the potential for Barbashev to explore free agency and possibly secure a higher salary, the fit within the team’s playstyle and chemistry with linemates such as Jack Eichel and Jonathan Marchessault made this deal a favorable outcome.

Although Barbashev’s effectiveness may have varied during his time with the St. Louis Blues, there is optimism that he will continue to perform at a high level and live up to the value of his new contract. His playmaking ability, physicality, and defensive contributions make him a valuable asset to the Golden Knights’ lineup.

Ivan Barbashev signed five years by Vegas Golden Knights
Ivan Barbashev signed five years by Vegas Golden Knights

Golden Knights Continue To Make Sacrifices

As the salary cap is expected to increase in the coming seasons, the investment in Barbashev aligns with the team’s long-term vision and provides stability to their forward group. With this signing, the Golden Knights have solidified their roster following the departure of Reilly Smith, positioning themselves for continued success in the future.

It’s going to be questioned by some as the Golden Knights dump another veteran for a player who performed in a short window with the team. That said, this is how the organization operates and it’s hard to argue their approach considering they just won the Stanley Cup.

Next: Milan Lucic Considering Reunion with Boston Bruins in Free Agency

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