Restricted free agent Mats Zuccarello and the New York Rangers avoided arbitration on Tuesday when the Norwegian Olympian agreed to a one-year deal worth $3.5 million.
The 26-year-old Norwegian Olympian was scheduled for a July 25th arbitration hearing and was reportedly seeking a deal in the $4.5 million-range.
Zuccarello is entering his fifth season with the Eastern Conference champions after posting career-highs of 19 goals and 40 assists last season in 77 games played. He added five goals and eight assists in the Rangers' playoff run to the Stanley Cup final.
The Rangers and Zucarello will continue to work towards a long-term deal for the player, but that can't be signed until January 1, 2015.
With Zuccarello under contract, Glen Sather and the Rangers still have two restricted free agents headed to arbitration. Chris Kreider is scheduled for a July 23rd hearing, while Derick Brassard's is five days later. Negotiations are ongoing with both players.