Wild sign lead­ing scorer

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - THE SECOND PAGE -

Two days after lock­ing up Nino Nieder­re­iter on a five-year deal, the Min­nesota Wild also avoided ar­bi­tra­tion Tues­day by sign­ing last sea­son’s lead­ing scorer, Mikael Gran­lund, to a three-year, $17.25 mil­lion con­tract. The deal av­er­ages to an an­nual $5.75 mil­lion salary-cap hit and gives the Wild at least three years of cost cer­tainty know­ing it has Gran­lund and Nieder­re­iter plugged in at a com­bined $11 mil­lion. Gran­lund will be paid $5.25 mil­lion for the up­com­ing sea­son, $5.5 mil­lion in 2018-2019 and $6.5 mil­lion in 2019-2020. The Wild bought one of his un­re­stricted free-agent sea­sons, and like Nieder­re­iter, there’s no no-trade clause. Gran­lund, 25, had a strong ar­bi­tra­tion case after av­er­ag­ing nearly 19 min­utes a game last sea­son, being nom­i­nated for the Lady Byng Tro­phy and being one of Coach Bruce Boudreau’s most trusted sol­diers when it came to de­fen­sive-zone starts and match­ing up against top play­ers along­side line­mate Mikko Koivu.

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