Darren Helm isn’t departing from Hockeytown anytime soon.
The Red Wings locked up the 25-year-old forward to a four-year deal worth $8.5 million, it was announced on Tuesday.
Helm, who scored 26 points (nine goals, 17 assists) in 68 games last season with Detroit, was due to become a a restricted free agent on July 1.
Helm struggled with a knee sprain in the last 10 games of the regular season.
After making an appearance in the first game of the playoffs, Helm suffered a lacerated right forearm tendon just a few minutes into the game. Helm is expected to be ready for training camp in September.
“Darren is an important part of our team, and we’re very happy that we’ve reached an agreement,” said general manager Ken Holland. ”He’s one of the fastest skaters in the game, and we love the physical element that he brings. He’s an outstanding penalty killer and the ideal third-line center for us behind Pavel (Datsyuk) and Henrik (Zetterberg).
“We really missed him when he was out of the lineup in March and April.”
Forward Justin Abdelkader and defenseman Kyle Quincey remain the Wings’ other restricted free agents.