Wild claim Stoll off waivers from Rangers

29 Comments

Jarret Stoll has a new home.

On Tuesday, the Minnesota Wild claimed Stoll off waivers from the Rangers, per Sportsnet.

It’s an interesting move from the Wild, a team looking to bolster its depth at center — and one, according to GM Chuck Fletcher, that made a run at Stoll this summer in free agency.

“So when we got a second chance at it, we just grabbed him,” Fletcher said, per the Star-Tribune. “Very good penalty killer, top faceoff guy, a guy that excels on the right side of the ice, which still has not been our strength in faceoffs, shoots the puck really well.”

Currently, the club has Mikael Granlund, Mikko Koivu, Charlie Coyle and Eric Haula playing down the middle. Coyle, though, is a converted winger and Haula, while effecting manning the fourth line with Chris Porter and Ryan Carter, has never really been that strong of a faceoff guy, with a career winning percentage of just 47.5.

Stoll also brings playoff experience to the table, no small thing for a Wild club looking to get over the hump.

For the last three years, the club has been bounced by the Chicago Blackhawks — once in the opening round, twice in the second — so there’s likely hope that Stoll, who won a pair of Stanley Cups with the Kings, can provide veteran leadership and know-how in the postseason.

Stoll was also help Minnesota’s penalty kill, which heads into Tuesday’s game against Vancouver sitting a dismal 26th in the league (77.1 percent).

Stoll, 33, is on a one-year deal worth $800,000.