Capitals see 'untapped potential' in Smith-Pelly

Geoff Burke / USA Today Sports

The Washington Capitals are hoping to tap into depth scoring on the cheap.

The club recently signed forward Devante Smith-Pelly to a one-year, two-way deal worth $650,000 at the NHL level in the hopes that the 42nd overall pick from the 2010 draft will deliver on all that made him a once-tantalizing prospect.

"I think there's some untapped potential," general manager Brian MacLellan said Monday following the signing, according to J.J. Regan of CSN Mid-Atlantic. "I think maybe conditioning played a factor in some of it. I think we're going to work with him to see if we can get a little bit of that back and create a player that we can use."

Smith-Pelly was made available after the final year of his previous contract was bought out by the New Jersey Devils. The Capitals, who handed sizable extensions to T.J. Oshie and Evgeny Kuznetsov, scooped him up with a view to filling out their bottom six.

"I think for us, we're looking for ways on the bottom end of our lineup to add cheaper players or develop cheaper players because of the (Kuznetsov) signing and the (Oshie) signing," MacLellan said. "So we're going to have to be more creative on the fourth line."

Smith-Pelly has never played in more than 54 games in a single NHL season, registering 33 goals and 44 assists in 266 appearances to date.

He did, however, score 27 goals in 55 AHL games back in 2013-14, a sign of what's possible if he puts it all together.

Capitals see 'untapped potential' in Smith-Pelly
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