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Oilers’ Smith Awarded $2.3M Contract

August 12, 2002

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TORONTO (AP) _ Edmonton Oilers defenseman Jason Smith was awarded a one-year, $2.3-million contract in arbitration Monday, raising his salary nearly $800,000 over last season.

Smith, 28, earned $1.525 million last season and was looking for $2.8 million. The Oilers countered with $1.95 million, more than the 10 percent minimum requirement for a qualifying offer.

``A tremendous win for Jason,″ Smith’s agent Art Breeze said from Calgary, Alberta.

Smith battled injuries last year while posting 18 points (five goals, 13 assists), 103 penalty minutes and a plus-14 rating.

Tom Poti, of the New York Rangers, had his arbitration hearing in Toronto on Monday. The 25-year-old defenseman had 25 points (two goals, 23 assists) in 66 games with the Rangers and Oilers last season, earning $925,000.

The Oilers dealt Poti to the Rangers at the March trading deadline.

Forwards Vaclav Prospal of the Tampa Bay Lightning, and Dave Scatchard of the New York Islanders have arbitration hearings scheduled for Tuesday.

The arbitration period ends Thursday.

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