Minnesota Wild secure depth at center position, sign Sam Steel to one-year deal worth $825,000

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- The Minnesota Wild signed former Anaheim Ducks center Sam Steel to a one-year, $825,000 contract on Tuesday, adding depth at a vital position.

The 24-year-old Steel played in a career-most 68 games for the Ducks last season, collecting six goals, 14 assists and a career-high 27 blocked shots.

The 2016 first-round draft pick has 24 goals and 41 assists in 197 career NHL games over parts of four seasons, all with Anaheim.

The native of Alberta became the youngest Ducks player to record a hat trick when he scored three goals on March 26, 2019, as a 21-year-old.

The Wild have spent time this offseason paring down payroll to help aid some salary-cap issues, and Steel was a low-cost option that could play behind Joel Eriksson Ek and Frederick Gaudreau.

Minnesota is coming off a playoff appearance last year, but the Wild lost in the first round, dropping a six-game decision to the St. Louis Blues.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.