Ross D. Franklin/Associated Press
Center Mikko Koivu will be with the Minnesota Wild for the foreseeable future.
On Monday, Wild general manager Chuck Fletcher announced the team reached a two-year contract extension with Koivu that will pay him $11 million through the 2019-20 season. The announcement noted he will make $6 million in 2018-19 and $5 million in 2019-20.
He was previously set to hit the open market as an unrestricted free agent following the 2017-18 campaign.
Koivu has developed into one of the faces of the franchise and has been with the Wild his entire career since they selected him with the No. 6 overall pick in the 2001 NHL draft. The announcement noted he was named the first full-time team captain in Minnesota history in 2009 and is first on the team’s list in a number of stats, including games (843), assists (435), points (614), power-play points (218) and shots on goal (1,937).
While he is 34 years old, he didn’t show many signs of slowing during the 2016-17 campaign as the Wild finished 49-25-8 and reached the playoffs for the fifth straight season.
He tallied 58 points with 40 assists and 18 goals, and the team’s announcement said he tied for eighth in the entire league with a plus-27 rating and was fifth with 938 faceoff wins. What’s more, he was a finalist for the Frank J. Selke Trophy, given to the league’s best defensive forward every year.
Koivu will now look to use his two-way skills to help lead the Wild on a deeper playoff run in the upcoming three seasons. Minnesota has been eliminated in the first round three times and the second round two times in the last five years.