It was announced on Tuesday that the Dallas Stars have inked forward Gemel Smith to a one-year, two-way extension with the Central Division club, keeping him on board through the end of the 2017-18 NHL season.
A native of Toronto, Ontario, Smith was drafted by the Stars with the 104th overall pick at the 2012 NHL Entry Draft.
After skating for the OHL’s Owen Sound Attack and London Knights, Smith went pro with Dallas in 2014, and he’s been with the club ever since.
In a unique development path, Smith spent his first year at the pro level exclusively with the AHL’s Texas Stars, but then saw four games in the ECHL along with his AHL play in his second full season. That was followed up, in a rare move for a forward with ECHL playing time, with NHL games played in his third full season, as the 23-year-old saw 17 games with Dallas this past year. During that time, he put up three goals and six points – so expect that he may get more NHL time in the future, as well.
With a two-way deal, there’s a chance that next season will see Smith spent more time in Cedar Park, but his one-year bridge contract suggests that the team may also be looking to see exactly what else he deserves to earn. If he has a successful campaign, potentially spending even more time in the NHL, his next deal could see a bit of a payday headed his way.