The Buffalo Sabres signed rookie defenseman Casey Nelson to a two-year extension today worth $650,000 a year. The Sabres initially signed Nelson to an entry-level deal in March after playing three seasons in the NCAA for Minnesota State University.
Nelson made his Sabres debut on March 26, 2016. He performed admirably in his short time with the club, potting 4P in 7G. In college he managed 60P in 99 games—winning the WCHA defensive player of the year in his final year.
Nelson will be competing for a bottom-pairing role with the Sabres, as most experts pencil in Kulikov, Franson, Bogosian, and Ristolainen in the top 4. The Wisconsin native (though born in Minnesota) is waiver-exempt, however, so he can be shuttled back and forth from the AHL without risk. His opportunity to make the big club out of camp will also depend on if the Sabres sign any UFA defensemen.