It’s been a season of changes for the Minnesota Wild. First with the trade that send Jason Zucker to Pittsburgh and only a few days later when Bruce Boudreau was sacked. Combine these moves from new GM Bill Guerin to the trades from Paul Fenton last year, and the core of the Wild seems to be changing rapidly. A new core is building, and a change seems to be happening. This makes the upcoming trade deadline one of the more interesting in Wild history. Will they stay the course of a rebuild and will there be a fire sale? Who could the Wild trade at the deadline and what should the return for them be?
The Most likely
Firstly, let’s start with those who are the most likely to get traded at the deadline.
The 26-year-old defenseman is probably the strongest of the Minnesota Wilds bargaining chips for the deadline. He has been great defensively and is among some of the best in the league in the defensive categories. Adding to that, Brodin is on pace for a career year in point production, with 24 points in 61 games. On a relatively good contract at 4.1 million for the next 2 years, he is exactly what a cup contender would want in a defenseman.
The only thing that could prevent this move, is the question of how willing the Minnesota Wild is to let Brodin go. At only 26 and with 2 years left of his deal, he is someone they might want to hang onto long term. Players like Kirill Kaprizov and Kevin Fiala seems to be the parts to build the new look offense, but in defense the Wild lack someone like Brodin in their system. Therefor they might look to resign Brodin rather than trading him
Potential Return: One of the main areas of weakness for the Wild is centers, so if the Wild were to trade Brodin, that surely is apart of the deal among with pick and/or prospects. It has been stated that if Brodin or any other key player would be traded a center would have to be included. This could be to bolster the team ahead of Kaprizov’s presumed arrival next year.
Like Brodin, Dumba is another one of the main parts that could see the end of his tenure in Minnesota. However, that is where the similarities end between the two. While both defenders, their style of play is as far from each other as could be. Where Brodin is a stonewall defensively minded player, Dumba is in possession of a phenomenal shot and filled with offensive talent.
While this season has been a low for Dumba with a disappointing 21 points in 61 games, Dumba is only 25 years old and on a fine contract for the next 3 years. What Dumba showed last season, where he undoubtably was the best player for the Wild prior to his season ending injury in December, and the age in mind there his stock has remained high despite an off year. From both teams looking to bolster ahead of the playoff, and a potential for the Wilds future.
Potential Return: The trade would be the same or similar to Brodin. It is doubtful that both will go tonight, but one of them could be on the block if a team was willing to add in a center and assets like picks and prospects for one of them. &nbsp;
Added only last season, and he started his Wild career on fire, but this season has been underwhelming at best for Donato. A healthy scratch for a chunk of game and a shortening of minutes has been costly for the young sniper. Only 11 goals and 18 points is a massive disappointment, after all the promise he showed when he arrived. He especially struggled at the start of the season and only very recently started to find some of the past seasons form. That could prove too late as the Wild look to different wingers, where the wild has plenty of options.
Potential Return: This is difficult to tell, but im sure the Wild would be looking to the draft or prospects to replace Donato with one of the weaker parts of the prospect pool. Like they did with Zucker, they traded a winger for a position of need, and those are centers and defenders. Therefor its likely they would look for a prospect in those areas for Donato.
One of the major weaknesses of the Minnesota Wild the past 2 seasons has been goaltending and once again thats been the case. Especially Dubnyk has once again had a dreadful year, with a .892 save procentage. Alex Stalock however, has had an improved year, where he has looked like the better goalie this season. Atleast on the Minnesota Wild.
The best goaltender for the Wild organisation however, is Kaapo Kahkonen. The finish goalie has been fantastic in the AHL, and even in his small stint in the NHL he looked calm and collected. He seems like the future between the pipes, and therefor the Wild could be looking to get him a shot for the rest of the season by trading one of their goalies to a team in need of them. With the new injuries to Carolina Hurricanes goalie tandem, it’s possible that they will look towards Stalock for a cheap and solid replacement.
Potential Return: This would not be glamorous or a high level pick, but a 4th or maybe even 3rd rounder could be a solid return among with the added roster spot for Kahkonen
The most recent acquisition of the Wild, as Galchenyuk arrived in the Jason Zucker deal. A few weeks later, he could be on the move again for another pick or prospect in order to truely hammer home the point of a rebuld. Galchenyuk is a UFA after the season and it is unlikely of Minnesota resigning him, so they have to try and get the most of him now. Granted its not likely that he would bring in a lot, but everything is better than nothing. However, if a playoff team is in need of scoring, the former 30 goal scorer could become a reletively cheap option at the deadline.
Potential Return: For the wild they have had a fair bit of luck recently in the later rounds of the draft and they could hope for another steal in the later rounds. A 5th or 4th round pick for Galchenyuk doesnt sound too unlikely.
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