Wild Signs Eric Staal, Alex Stalock, Chris Stewart

According to Michael Russo of the Star Tribune and other sources, the Minnesota Wild have signed former Carolina Hurricanes captain Eric Staal to a three-year, $10.5 million contract.

Staal, 31, is from Thunder Bay, Ontario, and has scored 325 goals and 781 points in 929 games. He won a Stanley Cup with Carolina in 2006, and was drafted second overall in 2003.

From the Wild:

Minnesota Wild General Manager Chuck Fletcher today announced the National Hockey League (NHL) club has agreed to terms with free-agent center Eric Staal (pronounced STAWL) on a three-year, $10.5 million contract.

Staal, 31 (10/29/84), recorded 33 points (10-23=33) in 63 games with the Carolina Hurricanes last season before being traded to the New York Rangers on Feb. 28, 2016 in exchange for Aleksi Saarela, a second-round selection in the 2016 NHL Entry Draft (Artur Kayumov), and a second-round pick in the 2017 NHL Entry Draft. The 6-foot-4, 205-pound native of Thunder Bay, Ont., notched six points (3-3=6) in 20 contests with the Rangers and ranked T-11th in the NHL with 62 takeaways.

Staal has tallied 781 points (325-456=781) and 680 penalty minutes (PIM) in 929 career NHL games with the Hurricanes and Rangers and owns 43 points (19-24=43) in 48 career playoff games. Staal led the NHL in playoff scoring in 2006 with 28 points (9-19=28) in 25 games as Carolina won the Stanley Cup. He was named to the 2006 NHL Second All-Star Team and has played in four NHL All-Star Games (2011, 2009, 2008 (MVP) and 2007).

Staal is a member of the Triple Gold Club having won a gold medal with Canada at the 2007 World Championship and the 2010 Olympics, along with the Stanley Cup in 2006. He also represented Canada at the 2002 World Under-18 Championship and the 2008 (silver medal) and 2013 World Championships (captain). Staal is also one of four NHL players who have played at least 900 games and tallied at least 300 goals, 400 assists and 700 points since entering the NHL in 2003-04 (Iginla, Marleau and D. Sedin). His brother, Jordan, played for the Carolina Hurricanes last season and his brother, Marc, played for the Rangers. Eric helped form the Staal Family Foundation, which benefits children fighting cancer and their families. 

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The Wild has also signed former San Jose Sharks goalie Alex Stalock, who played at Minnesota-Duluth, to a one-year, two-way contract. He will begin the year with the Iowa Wild of the AHL.

Stalock, 28, is 24-19-7 in the NHL with a 2.37 goals-against average, .911 save percentage and four shutouts.

From the Wild:

Minnesota Wild General Manager Chuck Fletcher today announced the National Hockey League (NHL) club has agreed to terms with free-agent goaltender Alex Stalock on a one-year, two-way contract ($650,000/$300,000).

Stalock, 28 (7/28/87), went 3-5-2 in 13 games with the San Jose Sharks last season posting a 2.94 goals-against average (GAA) and a .884 save percentage (SV%). The 6-foot, 185-pound native of Saint Paul, Minn., also appeared in five American Hockey League (AHL) contests with the San Jose Barracuda and the Toronto Marlies, posting a 3-2-0 record, with a 2.38 GAA and a .916 SV%. He was traded by San Jose, along with Ben Smith and a conditional fourth-round selection in the 2018 NHL Entry Draft to Toronto in exchange for James Reimer and Jeremy Morin on Feb. 27, 2016. Stalock is 24-19-7 with a 2.37 GAA, a .911 SV% and four shutouts in 62 career NHL games during parts of five seasons with San Jose (2010-16). He is 0-1 with a 2.05 GAA and a .929 SV% in three Stanley Cup playoff contests. Stalock is 81-55-10 with a 2.59 GAA, a .910 SV% and seven shutouts in 150 career AHL matches. He was originally drafted by San Jose in the fourth round (112th overall) of the 2005 NHL Entry Draft.

Stalock played three seasons at the University of Minnesota Duluth (2006-09) and ranked first in the NCAA in minutes played and led the Bulldogs to the WCHA playoff championship and the NCAA West Regional Final in 2009. He was named to the NCAA West First All-American Team and the WCHA First All-Star Team in 2009 and the WCHA All-Rookie Team in 2007. Stalock played for Cedar Rapids in the United States Hockey League (USHL) for two seasons (2004-06) and was named the 2006 USHL Goaltender of the Year and the 2005 USHL Playoff MVP as Cedar Rapids won the Clark Cup. He helped South Saint Paul High School to the 2004 Minnesota Class A State Hockey Tournament and was named to the All-Tournament Team.

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Also, the Wild have announced that Chris Stewart, 28, is returning on a two-year, $2.3 million deal.

From the Wild:

Minnesota Wild General Manager Chuck Fletcher today announced the National Hockey League (NHL) club has agreed to terms with free-agent forward Chris Stewart on a two-year, $2.3 million contract.

Stewart, 28 (10/30/87), tallied 20 points (8-12=20) and ranked fourth on the team with 73 penalty minutes (PIM) in 56 regular season games with the Anaheim Ducks last season, adding three points (1-2=3) in seven playoff contests. He missed 19 games (Feb. 13-March 22) due to a fractured jaw. The 6-foot-2, 231-pound native of Toronto, Ont., owns 284 points (137-147=284) and 608 PIM in 519 career NHL games in eight seasons with Colorado, St. Louis, Buffalo, Minnesota and Anaheim (2008-16). Stewart has recorded 11 points (6-5=11) in 34 Stanley Cup playoff games.

He notched 11 points (3-8=11) in 20 regular season games and two assists in eight playoff contests with the Wild in 2014-15, after being acquired from Buffalo on March 2, 2015, in exchange for a second-round selection in the 2017 NHL Entry Draft. Stewart played for Team Canada at the 2011 World Championship and was originally selected by Colorado in the first round (18th overall) of the 2006 NHL Entry Draft. 

[Star Tribune, Minnesota Wild]
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