The Minnesota Wild have signed unrestricted free agent defenseman Dakota Mermis to a new two-year, two-way contract, according to Michael Russo of The Athletic. The deal will carry an NHL average annual value of $750K, while giving Mermis a nice minor league guarantee. He’ll earn an AHL salary of $300K in 2021-22 and $325K in 2022-23, but has guarantees of $350K and $375K in the two seasons.
Mermis, 27, played just three games with the Wild this season, spending most of the year on the taxi squad instead. After clearing waivers just as the season started, he was quickly sent to the taxi squad and ended up spending just five days on the NHL roster between January 12 and May 13. Still, a well-liked depth defenseman that can come in and out of the lineup whenever necessary is something that every team in the league needs, and that’s the role he can continue to serve in Minnesota.
Undrafted, Mermis has played in 23 NHL games over the last four seasons and could end up spending more time in Iowa than Minnesota over the next couple of years. In fact, he could be a big part of the leadership group for the AHL franchise, given his history as captain of the Tucson Roadrunners and alternate captain of the Binghamton Devils.