Wild continue free-agent frenzy, signing power forward Nolan to two-year deal

ST. PAUL, Minn. – The Minnesota Wild continued their free-agent spending spree Sunday, signing forward Owen Nolan to a US$5.5-million, two-year contract.

Nolan, a former first overall pick, had 16 goals and 16 assists in 77 games with the Calgary Flames last season. The 36-year-old winger added two goals and three assists in seven post-season games.

“Owen Nolan is a true power winger who can score goals, play a physical brand, play either wing and take face-offs,” Wild president and general manager Doug Risebrough said in a statement. “We are excited to add a player of his experience and versatility.”

Nolan is a five-time all-star who set career highs with 44 goals and 84 points with the San Jose Sharks in 1999-2000. The native of Belfast, Northern Ireland has 381 goals, 426 assists and 1,727 penalty minutes in 1,068 career games with Quebec, Colorado, San Jose, Toronto, Phoenix and Calgary.

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Nolan is the fourth free-agent forward to join the Wild since free agency opened July 1. Ex-Colorado Avalanche star Andrew Brunette signed a $7-million, three-year deal, while former Phoenix Coyotes forward Craig Weller inked a $1.2-million, two-year pact and ex-Dallas Stars winger Antti Miettinen signed a three-year contract.

The Wild also signed goalie Barry Brust to a multi-year contract and right wing Jesse Schultz to a one-year deal.

The 24-year-old Brust was 24-16-3 with a 2.27 goals-against average last season for the Wild’s top minor league affiliate, the Houston Aeros. The 25-year-old Schultz had 26 goals and 40 assists in 80 games last season for the Chicago Wolves in the AHL. He’s a cousin of Wild defenceman Nick Schultz.

-with files from The Associated Press.