News has trickled out over the past week as to the contract statuses of several players currently with the Minnesota Wild organization. Today, the club clarified things by announcing the re-signing of two players, and qualifying offers made to eight players. Three players did not receive qualifying offers.
Rau’s deal is for two years and Veilleux’s is a one-year contract.
The Wild made qualifying offers to the following restricted free agents: C Cody Almond, G Dennis Endras, D Justin Falk, D Chay Genoway, C David McIntyre, RW Carson McMillan, RW Jarod Palmer and RW Nick Palmieri. Almond did sign with Servette in Geneva of the Swiss League last week, making it unlikely that he would re-sign with Minnesota.
Sending offers to restricted free agents allows the team to retain their negotiating rights. If the Wild does not extend offers to restricted free agents by July 1, they become unrestricted free agents.
The Wild did not make qualifying offers to the following restricted free agents: D Kris Fredheim, RW Nick Johnson and LW Guillaume Latendresse. However, General Manager Chuck Fletcher has said the Wild has been in talks to sign a deal with Latendresse.
In nine games with Minnesota, Rau scored two goals, both memorable game winners. Rau’s first-career goal came against the Dallas Stars on Hockey Day Minnesota. On Hockey Day America in front of a national television audience on NBC, Rau scored the lone goal on a no-look shot against Tim Thomas and the Boston Bruins.
Rau spent most of the season playing for the Wild’s American Hockey League affiliate, the Houston Aeros. In 67 games with the Aeros, he scored 14 goals and 21 assists, ranking fifth on Houston with 35 points.
Rau signed as a free agent with the Wild on May 17, 2010. The Eden Prairie native was a four-year standout at Colorado College before signing with the Minnesota. In four seasons at Colorado, Rau totaled 73 goals, 67 assists and 140 points with the Tigers.
Rau is currently on the third leg of the Wells Fargo Minnesota Wild Road Tour, making stops today in International Falls and Warroad. For a complete list of Road Tour stops, click here.
Veilleux compiled two assists and 15 penalty minutes in 21 games with Minnesota after being acquired in a trade from New Jersey on Feb. 24 along with defenseman Kurtis Foster, right wing Nick Palmieri, a 2012 second round pick and a 2013 third round pick in exchange for D Marek Zidlicky.
The 6-foot-1, 190-pound native of St. Georges de Beauce, Que., skated in one game with New Jersey and recorded 22 points (11-11=22) and 53 PIM in 40 games with Albany (AHL). Veilleux has collected 101 points (46-55=101) and 317 PIM in 460 career NHL games with Minnesota, Tampa Bay and New Jersey. The 30 year old ranks eighth on the Wild’s all-time games played list and 10th in PIM. Veilleux was originally selected by Minnesota in the third round (93rd overall) of the 2001 NHL Entry Draft.