The Minnesota Wild announced via Twitter that they have re-signed 24-year-old defenseman Christian Folin to a two-year contract.
According to Michael Russo of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, it’s a one-way contract with an annual cap hit of $725,000 per season.
From the Minneapolis Star-Tribune:
Most interesting is it’s a full one-way contract. That currently gives the Wild eight defensemen if Mike Reilly makes the team (Ryan Suter, Jonas Brodin, Marco Scandella, Jared Spurgeon, Reilly, Matt Dumba, Nate Prosser and Folin).
I use the word “interesting” because if the Wild keeps eight defensemen and Niklas Backstrom remains on the roster once the season starts as a third goaltender, the Wild could only keep 12 forwards (no extras).
In 40 regular season games with the Wild last season, the former university hockey standout scored twice and recorded 10 points. Minnesota signed Folin as a college free agent in March, 2014.
Not only do the Minnesota Wild still have to get Devan Dubnyk signed, they also have a trio of restricted free agents — Mikael Granland, Erik Haula and Christian Folin — in need of new deals.
Granlund, the former ninth overall draft pick, finished with 39 points in 2014-15, the fifth most on the team. The 23-year-old’s agent provided an update on contract talks to the StarTribune.
“We’ve been talking on and off since training camp basically,” said Todd Diamond. “I wouldn’t say we’re way off. It’s like a marathon. The last half mile is the most difficult. I would surmise that’s where we are.”
While Granlund, 23, is obviously a big part of the Wild’s future, Dubnyk, an unrestricted free agent, will be GM Chuck Fletcher’s priority until July 1.
According to the StarTribune, Fletcher will meet with Dubnyk in Las Vegas at next week’s NHL Awards and, soon after that, he’ll meet with Dubnyk’s agent, Mike Liut, at the draft in Florida.
Yesterday, the Wild confirmed their intentions to buy out winger Matt Cooke in order to gain some additional room under the cap.
The Minnesota Wild suffered one of the worst playoff losses in franchise history on Wednesday night — a 6-1 shellacking at home against St. Louis — and the day after, head coach Mike Yeo did a little posturing.
“There’s still pressure on them,” Yeo said Thursday, per the Pioneer Press. “They think that they’re much better than us, and it’s our job to prove we’re up at that level.”
As for last night?
“It’s not like we played our best hockey and came up short,” he explained.
That message stayed consistent with comments made in the immediate aftermath of Game 4 (basically, “we stunk, let’s move on.”) Zach Parise said his team was “brutal” and Yeo followed suit today, saying Minnesota has plenty more to give — which, apparently, will include a new lineup look for Game 5.
There’s no shortage of candidates to come out after Game 4. Sean Bergenheim played a team-low 10:11 and finished minus-2 on the night, and has been parked in the press box already this postseason. Veteran d-man Jordan Leopold had the fewest minutes among all blueliners and finished minus-3, and with the wealth of options Yeo has at his disposal — Matt Cooke, Jordan Schroeder, Erik Haula, Christian Folin and Nate Prosser all sat last game — there are plenty of new looks he could throw at St. Louis.
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The Minnesota Wild scored two NCAA prospects on Monday, agreeing to terms with University of Vermont goalie Brody Hoffman and Minnesota State defenseman Zach Palmquist to entry-level deals for next season.
Hoffman, 24, went 13-6-2 this season with a 2.06 GAA and .922 save percentage; during his freshman campaign for the Catamounts, he became the first goalie in school history to start every regular season contest since Tim Thomas did it in 1996-97.
Palmquist, also 24, was an assistant captain for the Mavericks this season and finished fourth on the team in scoring, with 29 points in 40 games. The four-year starter also set a record this season by playing in his 160th consecutive contest, which marks the longest streak in Minnesota State school history.
The Wild have been busy inking collegiate free agents this spring, having earlier agreed to terms with New Hampshire leading scorer Grayson Downing. These moves make sense; Minnesota has moved a number of picks at the upcoming drafts (3rd and 5th rounders at this year’s, 2nd and 3rd in 2016) and needs to find alternative methods to stockpile prospects.
Previously, the Wild had success on the NCAA free agent front by inking coveted UMass-Lowell d-man Christian Folin in the spring of 2014.
Minnesota has inked collegiate free agent Grayson Downing to a two-year, entry-level deal, the club announced Tuesday night.
Downing, 22, led New Hampshire in goals this season — with 21 in 38 games — which put him tied for third in Hockey East and tied for 13th in the NCAA. A fourth-year senior with the Wildcats, Downing has decent size — 6-foot, 200 pounds — and will report to the Wild’s AHL affiliate in Iowa, now that his NCAA career is complete (New Hampshire lost to Jack Eichel-led Boston University in the Hockey East semifinals last week.)
More, from the Star-Tribune:
It’s likely too soon for [Downing] to compete for a roster spot next season, but after trading so many draft picks the past few years and with so many of its top prospects playing in college, the Wild’s trying to add some depth and skill to Iowa next season.
Previously, the Wild had success on the NCAA free agent front by inking coveted d-man Christian Folin in the spring of 2014.