NHL Free Agency 2022: Curtis Lazar signs deal with Canucks

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Lazar becomes first Bruins 2022 free agent to sign with new team originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston

Curtis Lazar became the first Boston Bruins free agent of the 2022 NHL offseason to officially sign a contract on Wednesday.

The British Columbia native is headed home. Lazar signed a three-year, $1 million AAV contract with the Vancouver Canucks.

As a childhood fan of the Canucks, Lazar is probably pretty happy with the deal. The fourth-line center for the Bruins also increased his salary from a previous $800,000 AAV.

Lazar came to the Bruins via a trade with the Buffalo Sabres ahead of the 2021 trade deadline. The Bruins picked up Lazar and Taylor Hall in exchange for Anders Bjork and a 2021 second-round draft pick.

2022 NHL free agency live blog: Latest rumors, news and contracts on Day 1

The six-foot, 203-pound forward produced eight goals and eight assists for the B's during the 2021-2022 season, including a goal in Game 6 of the playoffs against the Carolina Hurricanes. As a Bruin, Lazar added grit and energy to the fourth line and consistently contributed to the penalty kill.

Lazar has notched 90 points and 90 penalties in his 404 career NHL games with Boston, Buffalo, the Calgary Flames and the Ottawa Senators. He was originally drafted by the Senators as the 17th overall pick in 2013.

The 27-year-old already fits in with the Vancouver organization, according to the Canucks' general manager Patrik Allvin.

"Curtis is a valuable addition to our group. He grew up a Canucks fan, was raised in BC, and already has a strong connection to our club," Allvin said. "He is a responsible 200-foot player who can line up at center or on the wing. Curtis brings energy, an ability to kill penalties and takes draws from the right side, which will be extremely valuable for our team."