Marcus Foligno isn’t one of the Wild’s go-to scorers.

His minutes aren’t off the charts, and he doesn’t have a letter of leadership sewn on his jersey.

But there’s no denying Foligno is necessary to the Wild– a reality the group made crystal-clear when it secured the two-way forward with a three-year, $9.3 million contract extension Tuesday on the brink of its season opener.

” We’re going to count on him to be part of the change that’s going on here, to make sure that things are going well in the locker room and on the ice,” General Manager Expense Guerin stated throughout a virtual interview after the signing. “He’s a person that takes care of everybody, too, on and off the ice. [He’s a] very important individual for our organization.”

When he got here in 2017, Foligno wasn’t woven into the inner workings of the Wild.

Traded from Buffalo who drafted him in the 4th round in 2009, Foligno was at first on the fringe as he adjusted to a new group. However in Year 2, he settled into a role as a penalty killer.

He took another advance last season, scoring 11 objectives, tape-recording a career-high 25 points and shining as a protective specialist who can shut down top players. But Foligno embedded himself in the Wild’s identity because of his style.

The 6-3, 224-pound winger is the Wild’s many rugged player, a physical agitator who safeguards his colleagues, holds other groups responsible and swings momentum with his work ethic. His 184 hits last season led the group. In general, he has 75 objectives and 108 assists in 565 career video games.

In the locker room, the 29-year-old has a happy-go-lucky character and is a spokesman for the group’s conscious, a vocal leader who communicates the Wild’s situation without sugarcoating it. And Foligno would understand what’s going on. He does not just have his finger on the pulse; he’s ended up being part of the heartbeat.

” You can talk all you want, however you have to back it up, and I seem like I took the next action in my profession– my game– last season, for sure,” stated Foligno, who followed in the steps of his daddy Mike (a longtime NHLer) and sibling Nick (the captain of Columbus). “It’s just something that you want to be organic. You want it to be natural. You don’t desire people to follow you because you’re making them. You want them to do it due to the fact that they wish to and they enjoy your business and being around you at the rink.

” So, that’s something I take pride in, appearing every day, working hard, laughing and keeping it light in the room.”

The Wild appreciates Foligno because of his compelling technique and the assistance scoring he supplies that reinforces the group’s depth. But he’s “different’ in Guerin’s eyes since of the intangibles.

” He has the capability to hold people’ hands to the fire,” Guerin said. “I have actually been clear with Marcus– that’s a big reason we value him.”

Although his duties aren’t altering, Foligno hopes to broaden his impact– contributing more offensively and helping the Wild establish a culture where it is successful consistently.

He also isn’t done proving his worth to the group.

Seattle’s expansion draft is on deck next offseason, and Foligno plans to “put up a fight” to show why the Wild ought to safeguard him– which Guerin recognized as a priority for the team.

” We didn’t sign Marcus to this [agreement] to lose him,” said Guerin, who had actually been negotiating the offer for rather some time.

The extension does not consist of any no-trade or no-movement provisions, and it runs through the 2023-24 season. Foligno has one more season left on a four-year, $11.5 million agreement and was set to become a totally free agent when it ended.

If he stays with the Wild for all 7 years, Minnesota will be his longest address in the NHL– a location where he’s put roots down with his better half, Natascia, and their 2 children, Olivia and Camila.

That’s also plenty of time for Foligno to deal with his objective of changing the group, a push for development that begins Thursday in Los Angeles.

” I believe that we are headed because instructions where we’re going to be a competing group,” Foligno stated. “I’m thrilled about the players we have and simply the group that we have. So that’s the most significant thing is that I wish to win. I don’t simply want to be comfortable and just kick back and play out my career. I wish to win a Stanley Cup, and it’s exciting understanding that we’re headed in a direction of being a Stanley Cup competing team. And it actually all starts Thursday for us.”