DETROIT - The Detroit Red Wings today agreed to terms with defenseman Jon Merrill on a one-year contract.
Merrill, 28, has totaled 61 points (12-49-61) and 195 penalty minutes in 356 games between the New Jersey Devils and Vegas Golden Knights. The 6-foot-3, 195-pound defenseman skated in 49 games with the Golden Knights in 2019-20, contributing seven points (2-5-7) and 32 penalty minutes and also logged an assist in his lone postseason appearance. Merrill also ranked fifth on Vegas in blocked shots (71), while posting 51 hits and 14 takeaways in 18:09 average time on ice. The seven-year NHLer posted career-best numbers with Vegas in 2018-19, logging 15 points (3-12-15), a plus-16 rating and 53 penalty minutes in 57 games with the team. He was originally a second-round draft pick (38th overall) of New Jersey in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft and played four seasons with the Devils (2013-17) before joining Vegas through the expansion draft.
Merrill played parts of two seasons in the American Hockey League prior to making the NHL full-time, logging 18 points (3-15-18) in 27 games with the Albany Devils from 2012-14. A native of Oklahoma City, Okla., Merrill grew up in Grand Blanc and Brighton, Mich., and skated for the Little Caesars AAA Hockey Club until 2007-08. He continued to play in the state of Michigan for five more years, spending two seasons at the U.S. National Team Development Program, where he totaled 41 points (8-33-41) in 101 games from 2008-10, and then three years at the University of Michigan, picking up 47 points (11-36-47), a plus-25 rating and 45 penalty minutes in 82 games, making the CCHA All-Rookie Team and CCHA Second All-Star Team as a freshman. Merrill has represented the United States in international play on four occasions, winning back-to-back gold medals and totaling three points (0-3-3) in 14 games during the 2009 and 2010 IIHF World Under-18 Championships and nine points (1-8-9) over 12 games during the 2011 (earning bronze) and 2012 IIHF World Junior Championships.
Jon Merrill, Defenseman
Born Feb 3 1992 -- Oklahoma City, OK
Height 6.03 -- Weight 195 -- Shoots L
Selected by New Jersey Devils round 2 #38 overall 2010 NHL Entry Draft