SAINT PAUL, Minn. – Minnesota Wild General Manager Bill Guerin today announced the National Hockey League (NHL) club has signed defenseman Jake Middleton to a three-year, $7.35 million contract ($2.45 million average annual value) that goes through the 2024-25 season.
Middleton, 26 (1/2/96), collected 10 points (4-6=10), 82 penalty minutes (PIM), 118 hits and 124 blocked shots in 66 games with the San Jose Sharks and Minnesota last season. His blocked shot total ranked second on the Wild. The 6-foot-3, 201-pound native of Stratford, Ontario, ranked third among NHL rookies in blocked shots and fourth in PIM. Minnesota acquired Middleton from the Sharks in exchange for goaltender Kaapo Kahkonen and a fifth-round selection in the 2022 NHL Draft on March 21, 2022. He tallied five points (1-4=5), a plus-7 rating, 13 PIM, 29 hits and 35 blocked shots in 21 games with the Wild. Middleton tallied his first career NHL goal on Nov. 24, 2021 vs. Ottawa and recorded career highs in blocked shots (7) and time on ice (25:01) on March 6, 2022 at Anaheim.
He made his Stanley Cup debut in Game One against St. Louis on May 2, 2022 and tallied one assist in six playoff games. Middleton led the Wild with a plus-6 rating and ranked second in blocked shots (11).
He owns 17 points (4-13=17), 95 PIM, 139 hits and 132 blocked shots in 80 career NHL games in four seasons with San Jose and Minnesota (2018-22). The left-shot blueliner recorded 69 points (16-53=69) and 273 PIM in 228 games during five seasons (2016-21) with the San Jose Barracuda in the American Hockey League (AHL).
Middleton was selected by the Los Angeles Kings in the seventh round (210th overall) of the 2014 NHL Draft.