The Minnesota North Stars paid a higher price for Washington center Dennis Maruk than the Capitals revealed when they announced his departure on Tuesday. In addition to a No. 2 draft choice in 1984, Washington received an undisclosed amount of cash.

The money factor became known when the North Stars' public relations department included it in a press release. Questioned about the cash, Capitals spokesman Lou Corletto checked with Minnesota officials and vacationing Washington General Manager David Poile, then acknowledged that the Capitals had received money in the deal.

Maruk said yesterday he felt better about the trade after receiving a call from Glen Sonmor, assistant to vacationing Minnesota General Manager Lou Nanne.

"Living here for five years, we were kind of settled," Maruk said. "But Glen Sonmor made me feel pretty good about it when he called. He said I'd be playing center, and that's a start. And he said they wanted my experience.

"He gave me some great compliments and made me want to get right with it. Minnesota wants me, and that's important. They're one of the better teams, and they're getting hungry to win the Stanley Cup. I would have accepted a trade to a lesser team, but going to Minnesota makes it that much easier."