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New Jersey Devils Sign Sami Vatanen to 1-Yr Deal

The New Jersey Devils are bringing back defenseman Sami Vatanen on a one-year deal. They signed the free agent on Thursday.

After discussion about where the defenseman might wind up, Sami Vatanen is coming back to New Jersey. The Devils have announced that they’ve signed the free agent defenseman to a one-year deal. The contract is worth $2 million this season and leaves him an unrestricted free agent once again next offseason.

Related: Six or Seven Teams in on D-man Sami Vatanen

Vatanen was previously part of the Devils organization, but a trade sent him to the Carolina Hurricanes last season. He failed to get into a regular season game with the team thanks to a nagging injury. By the time he returned to join the Hurricanes in the postseason, the Hurricanes didn’t have a lot to show considering they gave up Janne Kuokkanen and a 2020 third-round pick to land Vatanen, a player who was supposed to do more than post three assists in seven games.

The $2 million price tag for Vatanen is more than fair if he can stay healthy and return to form. This is a defenseman who has posted multiple 20-plus and 30-plus point seasons. He will join Ryan Murray from the Columbus Blue Jackets and Dmitry Kulikov from the Winnipeg Jets who also are joining the Devils blue line corps this season.

The Devils already have P.K. Subban and Damon Severson on the right side, plus Connor Carrick. One has to wonder if things change, or if Vatanen was brought in simply to add depth?

On the left, they have Ryan Murray, Will Butcher, Dmitri Kulikov and prospect Ty Smith.

Next: Bowen Byram Set to Join Avalanche, Trade Coming to Keep Him Around?

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