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Wild Inks Brodin To Entry Level Deal

by Glen Andresen / Minnesota Wild

Jonas Brodin does everything fast, so it stands to reason that the fleet-footed defenseman wasted little time in signing a contract with the Minnesota Wild.

On his 18th birthday, the ninth overall pick in the 2011 NHL Draft signed a three-year entry level deal with the Wild.

"I'm so happy right now," he said. "It's every guy's dream to sign an NHL contract, so it's just a dream come true."

The plan for Brodin is to spend another year in his native Sweden, playing for Farjestad in the Swedish Elite League for the second straight year. Last year, as a 17-year-old, he tallied four assists in 42 games before notching two goals in Farjestad's march to the SEL championship. The 6-foot-1, 169-pounder was a member of Sweden's entry in the 2011 U-18 World Junior Championships where he recorded one assist in four games as the Swedes took silver.

"I just need to go home and work on everything," he said of his plans for next season. "I will work hard and hopefully be playing here in one year or two."

When Brodin was selected by the Wild, Assistant General Manager Brent Flahr raved about the defenseman's skating ability, calling him "elite" in that respect. As he watched Brodin participate in drills for the first time during the Wild's Development Camp on Tuesday, Flahr wasn't changing his tune. If anything, he was even more enthused.

"Watching him in certain drills here, he's got a special talent," said Flahr.

Seeing as how he just turned 18, it wasn't absolutely necessary to get this deal done, but considering how highly the Wild regards him, there was no need to wait.

"It was inevitable that we were going to sign him. Better to get it done sooner rather than later," explained Flahr.

"Realistically, he needs to get physically stronger. He's going to a very good program, a very good team. He'll play more this year and it will be a good place to develop. He'll hopefully get a chance to play over here during the World Juniors. It should be a real good year for him. Hopefully he can come to camp next year and compete for a position."

For now, Brodin is concentrating on Development Camp, which marks his second visit to Minnesota in less than a month. This time, he's able to hang out with fellow Swedes and top prospects Johan Larsson and Johan Gustafsson.

"It's a nice city and really a big hockey town, so it's good. I like the organization and the guys here."
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