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Canucks sign Sven Baertschi to two-year, $3.7M contract

Vancouver Canucks v Calgary Flames

CALGARY, AB - OCTOBER 7: Sven Baertschi #47 of the Vancouver Canucks skates against the Calgary Flames in the season opener at Scotiabank Saddledome on October 7, 2015 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. (Photo by Derek Leung/Getty Images)

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With expectations lowered, Sven Baertschi has been a relative bright spot at times for the Vancouver Canucks.

Vancouver rewarded the former Calgary Flames prospect on Thursday, keeping him from RFA status by locking him down to a two-year, $3.7 million contract.

The team breaks his deal down as such:

The contract will carry a value of $1,700,000 in the first year and a value of $2,000,000 in the second year for an annual average value of $1,850,000.

Keeping Baertschi around is a simple enough decision, yet the bigger questions revolve around Vancouver’s next steps.

Do they continue to try to scrap for a playoff spot or maybe except a step closer to the basement to regroup?

The team isn’t sure whether it will buy out Alex Burrows or Chris Higgins. There are rumored free agent flirtations with the likes of Milan Lucic and Troy Brouwer. Their Erik Gudbranson trade smelled of a “win now” feeling. There are even mutterings that the team would have made the playoffs if it weren’t for an injury.

So ... a lot of the signs point to the Canucks focusing on the present more than the future, but the good news is that Baertschi can fit into either gameplan (even if only in a minor role).