St. Louis Blues forward Vladimir Sobotka was awarded a one-year contract through arbitration on Monday, but the team announced that he will play the 2014-15 season in the Kontinental Hockey League.
Financial terms of the arbitration award were not disclosed by the Blues, but the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported it to be worth $2.725 million. The deal will be enforced upon his return to the NHL.
“We are looking forward to having Vladimir in a Blues uniform when he returns to the NHL,” said Blues general manager Doug Armstrong in a statement Monday. “We wish him the best of luck in the upcoming season.”
Sobotka notched nine goals and 24 assists for a career-high 33 points in 61 games for the Blues last season. He also led the NHL with a 61.9 percent winning percentage on faceoffs.
The 27-year-old Czech native spent the past four seasons in St. Louis after playing his first three years with Boston. He has 36 goals and 88 assists for 123 points in 381 NHL games.
Sobotka will play in Russia for Avangard Omsk in the KHL.
According to the Post-Dispatch, Sobotka asked to be traded and also refused a two-year, $6 million offer from the
Also, the St. Louis Blues have signed defenseman Nate Prosser and forward Jeremy Welsh to one-year, two-way contracts.
Prosser played in a career-high 53 games for the Minnesota Wild last season, totaling eight points, including two game-winning goals. For his career, the 28-year-old has amassed 21 points in 126 games.
Welsh scored one goal in 19 games with the Vancouver Canucks and 15 points in 49 games with the AHL’s Utica Comets last year.