The Colorado Avalanche have re-signed restricted free agent forward Kiefer Sherwood to a one-year contract. PuckPedia reports that the two-way deal is worth $750K in the NHL and $335K in the AHL, with a minor league guarantee of $365K. Sherwood was eligible for salary arbitration.
Now 26, Sherwood has played 76 NHL games over the past three seasons, including 16 with the Avalanche this year. He’s not a dominant piece at that level, but he is in the minor leagues, as he showed with ten goals and 16 points in ten games for the Colorado Eagles. Sherwood is a valuable depth piece, able to come into the lineup in a pinch and contribute, but he won’t be smashing down any doors for a full-time roster spot.
That is to say, as long as there is a better option in Colorado ahead of him. The team has just a handful of forwards under contract for next year, with Gabriel Landeskog, Brandon Saad, Liam O’Brien and Pierre-Edouard Bellemare all scheduled for unrestricted free agency. Joonas Donskoi was nabbed by the Seattle Kraken and Tyson Jost is an RFA, leaving just six other forwards under one-way contracts.
With the kind of cap crunch the Avalanche face from potential extensions for Landeskog and goaltender Philipp Grubauer, perhaps Sherwood’s league-minimum deal will actually be pretty appealing on the fourth line next season. At any rate, he’ll now be able to compete for playing time and earn a pretty healthy minor league salary even if he misses out on the NHL roster.