After being placed on waivers by the New York Rangers on Monday, center Jarret Stoll was claimed by the Minnesota Wild on Tuesday. The 33-year old has had a disappointing season to this point, with just three points (one goal and two assists) in 29 games played for New York, but he has won 57.9 percent of his face-offs and accounted for 58 hits.
Stoll can help the Wild on face-offs and on the penalty kill, and he was also on two Stanley Cup-winning teams with the Los Angeles Kings in 2012 and 2014. He does come with a bit of baggage, after an arrest in Las Vegas last spring on a charge of cocaine possession that came at a bad time as he was headed for free agency. The charge was reduced to two misdemeanors, and he wound up doing community service. For those that care, Stoll is involved off the ice with Erin Andrews of Fox Sports and “Dancing With The Stars” on ABC.
Stoll signed a one-year, $800,000 deal with the Rangers, so the Wild aren’t taking a tremendous financial risk by bringing him aboard.
ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun briefly outlined how Stoll may appeal to the Wild.
What the Wild see in Stoll: Veteran. Cup winner. Right shot center. Help on faceoffs and PK
— Pierre LeBrun (@Real_ESPNLeBrun) December 15, 2015
Among players with at least 100 face-off wins so far this season, Stoll is seventh in face-off percentage.
To clarify: earlier figures are 5-on-5. This figure is correct for all situations, where he’s 7th. https://t.co/d9so5k8RHG
— Marino Eccher (@MarinoEccher) December 15, 2015
And here’s another nugget regarding Stoll’s prowess in the face-off circle.
Since 03-04, Jarret Stoll ranks 6th among active players with a .552 faceoff winning pct (min. 400 games) #mnwild
— Michael Russo (@Russostrib) December 15, 2015
Stoll is likely to make his Wild debut Thursday night, coincidentally against the Rangers. If, as Michael Russo of the Minneapolis Star Tribune suggests, Stoll’s presence allows Charlie Coyle to move back to winger the move will be particularly good.
Brad Berreman is a Senior Writer at Rant Sports.com. Follow him on Twitter.