The Minnesota Wild and Kirill Kaprizov have agreed on a five-year contract worth $45 million and will keep the star forward in Minnesota through the 2025-26 season.
The 24-year-old scored 27 goals and recorded 51 points in 55 games on his way to becoming the first player in franchise history to win the Calder Trophy, given to the NHL’s top rookie.
But contract negotiations weren’t as easy as Kaprizov’s transition from the KHL to the NHL. A restricted free agent, Kaprizov reportedly preferred a short-term deal as opposed to the long-term deal the Wild were offering.
Negotiations lasted through the summer and got to the point where Kaprizov’s camp stated he had an agreement to go back to Russia in place if he couldn’t reach a deal with the Wild.
But the Sept. 1 deadline passed and both sides eventually reached a deal for the forward to stay in Minnesota.
With the buyout of Zach Parise and Ryan Suter, Kaprizov enters camp as the new face of the franchise. As the leader of a young nucleus, the Wild will look to break through and earn their first playoff series victory since 2015.