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Round 2
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Stanley Cup Final

Wild ink top pick Matt Dumba to three-year deal

Thursday, 07.19.2012 / 12:50 PM / News

NHL.com

The Minnesota Wild on Thursday signed defenseman Matt Dumba, the seventh player chosen in last month's NHL Draft, to a three-year, entry-level contract.

The contract is worth $2.775 million if he plays in the NHL, according to the Pioneer Press.

The signing came a few days after Dumba took part in the Wild’s development camp. He had two of the best hits of the camp scrimmages, both occurring on Sunday after the prospects were put through a series of on- and off-ice workouts throughout the week.

The 17-year-old -- he turns 18 on July 25 -- becomes the youngest player under contract with the Wild. He is eligible to return to his junior team, the Red Deer Rebels, if he doesn’t make Minnesota’s roster this fall.

"I'm not thinking about that at all," he said, according to the newspaper. "I just want to make Minnesota."

Dumba led all Western Hockey League defensemen in goals last season with 20 and added 37 assists for 57 points in 69 games. He led Red Deer with nine power-play goals. Dumba was the WHL’s Rookie of the Year in 2010-11 after he led the Rebels in rookie scoring with 15 goals and 26 points.

Dumba captained Team Canada at the 2012 Under-18 World Championships, leading the tournament in scoring with 12 points, including five goals, in seven games while being named the tournament's best defenseman and leading Canada to a bronze medal. The 6-foot, 185-pounder also captained Canada at the 2011 Ivan Hlinka Memorial tournament, scoring two goals and an assist in five games to help the Canadians win the gold medal.

"He's a big part of our future," Wild assistant general manager Brent Flahr told the newspaper. "Whether that's this year or the next year or the year after that remains to be determined."

I've been getting frustrated lately, and the only thing keeping me sane was the team winning and other people stepping up and scoring. Then you just kind of let it go and realize you can end the series with one shot, that frustration goes away for a brief moment, and that's what happened.

— Montreal forward Max Pacioretty after scoring the series-winner in Game 4 -- his first career playoff goal -- to eliminate the Lightning and send the Canadiens into the second round