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Nick Bjugstad is returning to the Arizona Coyotes on a two-year contract
By Cam Lewis7 months ago
Nick Bjugstad is headed back to the desert.
According to Craig Morgan, Bjugstad and the Arizona Coyotes have agreed to a two-year contract worth $2.1 million annually. This is a nice pay raise for the big pivot as the previous two contracts he signed were one-year deals worth $900k.
Bjugstad broke into the NHL with the Florida Panthers during the 2013-14 season and scored 16 goals and 38 points across 76 games as a rookie. A few months into the 2014-15 season, Bjugstad and the Panthers agreed to a six-year contract extension worth $24 million.
He played the first three of those seasons in Florida and was traded in the middle of the 2019-20 season to the Pittsburgh Penguins in a multi-player deal with Derick Brassard and Riley Sheahan going back the other way. He played 45 games for the Penguins and got moved to the Minnesota Wild ahead of the shortened 2021 season as a salary cap dump.
Bjugstad inked a one-year, $900k deal with the Coyotes last summer and he rejuvenated his carer playing in the desert. He scored 13 goals and 23 points over 59 games for Arizona and got traded along with AHLer Cam Dineen to the Oilers ahead of the trade deadline. Bjugstad scored four goals and six points over 19 regular-season games with the Oilers and he added three goals in the playoffs.
The 17 goals and 29 points that Bjugstad put up between the Coyotes and Oilers in 2022-23 was the most he had scored in a single season since the 2017-18 season when he was with the Panthers.
A big, versatile forward who kills penalties effectively, the Oilers certainly would have loved to bring Bjugstad back, but the team is pressed too tight against the salary cap ceiling to match what Arizona offered.
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