The Detroit Red Wings have secured some minor league depth, signing Dylan McIlrath to a two-year two-way contract extension. According to CapFriendly, McIlrath will earn $700K at the NHL level and avoid unrestricted free agency until the summer of 2021.
McIlrath, 27, was infamously drafted 10th overall by the New York Rangers in 2010, the team hoping that his uber-physical style would translate to the NHL in a shutdown role. He was taken ahead of other NHL stars like Cam Fowler (12th overall), Jaden Schwartz (14th) and Vladimir Tarasenko (16th), but wouldn’t experience the kind of NHL success that his contemporaries had. Instead, McIlrath has struggled to get into a lineup at the highest level for any length of time, suiting up for just 50 NHL games over his career.
Most recently that included seven with the Red Wings, after he found himself joining the organization during the 2016-17 campaign. The 6’5″ 236-lbs defenseman has been a regular in the Grand Rapids Griffins lineup ever since, racking up 259 penalty minutes in 149 games. There’s little chance he will make a big impact at the NHL level at this point, but his presence in the minor leagues will add some experience to the blue line. McIlrath will have to clear waivers after training camp in order to be sent down.