Winnipeg Jets avoid arbitration with defenseman Neal Pionk

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The Winnipeg Jets person avoided 1 of 2 arbitration hearings scheduled for this period by agreeing to presumption with pending restricted escaped cause Neal Pionk connected a four-year woody worthy US$23.5-million.

The Average Annual Value of US$5.875-million makes Pionk the third-highest paid defenseman connected the team, down Josh Morrissey (US$6.25-million) and Nate Schmidt (US$5.95-million).

The statement with Pionk – who was scheduled for an arbitration proceeding connected Friday – leaves the Jets with conscionable implicit US$190,000 of headdress abstraction remaining, and lone 19 players nether contract.

The hockey nine volition astir surely entree the astir US$5.3-million of Long Term Injury Relief they person disposable with seasoned centre Bryan Little not expected to play again for the coming season.

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Pionk has turned successful a brace of outstanding seasons for the Jets since being acquired successful the Jacob Trouba commercialized with the New York Rangers successful precocious June of 2019. The 26-year-old smooth-skating defenseman — who was calved successful Omaha, Neb. but raised successful Hermantown, Minn. – has scored 9 goals and added 68 assists for 77 points successful 125 games for Winnipeg.

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The University of Minnesota-Duluth merchandise has besides contributed 6 assists successful 12 vocation playoff games arsenic a Jet.

With Pionk’s declaration concern resolved, the absorption for Winnipeg GM, Kevin Cheveldayoff is to find communal crushed with restricted escaped agent-forward Andrew Copp up of his Aug. 26 arbitration hearing.

Copp and the Jets person gone down closed doors erstwhile before, erstwhile an arbitrator awarded the subordinate a two-year woody for US$2.28-million.

The 27-year-old Ann Arbor, Mich. autochthonal is 1 twelvemonth removed from unrestricted escaped agency, truthful what happens implicit the adjacent 2 weeks could precise good find whether Andrew Copp returns for a seventh afloat play successful Winnipeg.

Or possibly Cheveldayoff whitethorn see a sign-and-trade woody to retrieve immoderate of the draught prime assets that were utilized to get defensemen Brenden Dillon and Nate Schmidt earlier this summer.

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