Zach Parise, Devils agree on 1-year deal

The New Jersey Devils avoided arbitration by signing left winger Zach Parise to a one-year contract, the team announced Friday night.

The two sides continue to try to work out a long-term contract. The deal is worth $6 million, according to TSN.

"It's a one-year settlement that makes sense for both player and club," Parise's agent, Wade Arnott, told ESPNNewYork.com.

Parise and the Devils had an arbitration hearing scheduled for Aug. 3.

Parise cannot sign a contract for the 2012-13 season until Jan. 1, 2012, per the terms of the collective bargaining agreement. The two sides can negotiate from now until then, they just can't make anything official.

Parise will be eligible to become an unrestricted free agent again on July 1, 2012.

"I think, by avoiding arbitration, we can come out with something both parties agree with just four days before the arbitration hearing, it just sets the platform where both parties are going in the same direction," Devils general manager Lou Lamoriello told the Newark (N.J.) Star-Ledger.

Lamoriello told the newspaper a one-year deal was "the best option" for the two sides at the moment.

"If (a long term deal) was something that could have been done, it would have been done," Lamoriello told the newspaper.

Parise missed most of this past season after having surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his right knee in early November. He returned late in the season for a game. Prior to his injury, Parise had been the catalyst of the Devils' offense for four seasons, scoring 146 goals.

The Devils also hired a coach on Friday, adding Dave Barr as an assistant. He'll join Larry Robinson, Adam Oates, and Chris Terreri on Peter DeBoer's staff.

"Dave Barr has had a successful post-playing career for 16 years on many levels," Lamoriello said. "We were fortunate to have him as a player in New Jersey for two years, and look forward to have him joining us as a member of our coaching staff."

Barr, 50, joins the Devils after spending two years as an assistant with Minnesota.

A native of Toronto, Barr played in 103 games for New Jersey from 1991-93. He had 12 goals, 32 points and 93 penalty minutes. Barr appeared in five games during the 1993 Patrick Division semifinals vs. Pittsburgh, and played in 71 career postseason games overall.

Mike Mazzeo is a regular contributor to ESPNNewYork.com. Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.