The Nashville Predators beat the free-agent deadline Saturday night and signed center Paul Gaustad to a four-year, $13 million contract.
Gaustad, 30, who was acquired at the February trade deadline, would have become an unrestricted free agent at noon EST.
Nashville dealt a 2012 first-round pick to Buffalo for Gaustad and a 2013 fourth-round selection. He has a reputation as excellent faceoff player, winning 58.8 percent of his faceoffs last season.
"I think every year we're going to have a shot at it," Gaustad told The Tennessean. "That was my main goal, was winning the Stanley Cup. I think Nashville will have a strong chance of winning it every year."
Gaustad had seven goals and 14 assists in 70 games last season with a minus-1 rating. He has scored 71 career goals in 493 games.
His new contract also has a limited no-trade clause, in which lists eight teams to which he cannot be dealt.