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Matt Nieto Elects Arbitration

NHL: Los Angeles Kings at Colorado Avalanche Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Today was the deadline for restricted free agents to file for arbitration, the Avs had 4 that were eligible but Matt Nieto was the only one that took advantage. Duncan Siemens, Rocco Grimaldi & Gabe Bourque did not file, Nikita Zadorov & Felix Girard are coming off ELCs and not eligible.

It’s not a real surprise, Nieto came out of his ELC last summer and took a small pay cut but upgraded from a 2-way contract to a 1-way. His qualifying offer would be $772k so it’s understandable that he may want a raise and perhaps some term and that the Avs would be open to offering that. Electing arbitration sets a deadline to get things done and given Colorado’s deliberate pace in negotiating it’s probably a good idea. Dates for hearings should be announced soon.

Siemens, Grimaldi and Bourque all played primarily in the AHL last season so arbitration would be little leverage. It’s of course possible they all signed their deals and the Avs are waiting for a batch announcement later this summer.

Last year, Mikhail Grigorenko and Tyson Barrie filed for arbitration. Grigo signed a 1-year deal with a large raise prior to his date. Barrie actually went through the arbitration process but signed a 4-year, $22M contract prior to the arbitrator’s decision.