The Dallas Stars have signed defenseman Miro Heiskanen to an eight-year contract worth $67.6 million.
The deal announced Saturday carries an annual salary cap hit of $8.45 million through the 2028-29 season. Only five NHL defensemen currently count more against the cap next season.
The 21-year-old Finn had 27 points last season and ranked ninth in the leagu e in ice time at just under 25 minutes a game. Heiskanen has 28 goals and 67 assists for 95 points in 205 regular-season games. He also has 30 points in 40 playoff games with Dallas, including a trip to the 2020 Stanley Cup Final.
"Since joining us, it has been clear that Miro is part of a collection of young, rising stars that are now playing in the National Hockey League," general manager Jim Nill said in a statement. "As an organization, we truly feel that Miro has just scratched the surface of his ability and will be in the Norris Trophy discussion for years to come."
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Heiskanen, the third pick in the 2017 draft, was fourth in Calder Trophy voting as rookie of the year his first season and 12th in Norris voting in 2019-20. He became a restricted free agent this summer.
"It feels great to get this done," Heiskanen said. "Of course there is a lot of work to be done, and we're very motivated to get back on the ice. It is very exciting to be a part of what Jim and his staff are building, and it's important to reward them for the trust they've shown with this long-term commitment."
Heiskanen's deal could set the bar for other restricted free agent defensemen like Colorado's Cale Makar and Vancouver's Quinn Hughes this year, and Boston's Charlie McAvoy next year.