Nico Hischier Inks Seven-Year Extension With Devils

Forward Was To Become RFA After Season

Alec Gearty
October 18, 2019 - 4:28 pm

Nico Hischier has no intention of leaving the New Jersey Devils. 

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Hischier, the Devils' first overall pick in 2017, is in the final year of his entry-level deal. Rather than waiting until the next offseason, Devils general manager Ray Shero took a proactive approach in his discussions with Hischier. 

The Swiss native inked a seven-year deal that carries an annual value of $7.25 million, the Devils announced on Friday. Hischier's current deal has a cap hit of $925,000 and was set to become a restricted free agent following the season.

"I like the direction the organization is going in and the confidence they give me is all a player can ask for," Hischier said in a statement. "We have a young, exciting team, and I am driven to try my best to help the team succeed every day. I was really welcomed here from day one, and I have always felt that I wanted to be part of the Devils."

Hischier, who turned 20 years old in January, is expected to be a crucial part of the Devils' core group along with fellow No. 1 overall pick Jack Hughes. 

During his rookie campaign, Hischier finished second on the Devils in scoring with 52 points — trailing Taylor Hall (93), who was named league MVP. He's tallied 101 points in 157 games with the Devils. 

"Nico is a special person who possess a team-first mentality combined with an inner drive to succeed," Shero said. "The entire organization is thankful to him and his family for believing in our future. We are excited that he will continue to play a prominent role with us for many years to come."

The Devils face a handful of difficult decisions to make after the season. Hischier was one of five notable RFAs next season — Jesper Bratt, MacKenzie Blackwood, Mirco Mueller and John Hayden's contracts expire after the 2019-20 season. 

Top offensive star Taylor Hall is an unrestricted free agent after the season and could likely depart in free agency if the team's struggle consists. New Jersey is 1-4-2 this season, securing its first win against the Rangers on Thursday.