Blackhawks News

Minnesota Wild Offseason Report Card

By Sean Fitzgerald

Minnesota Wild: The Wild come from the Northwest division in the Western conference last season. They were 26-19-3 and finished 2nd in their division. They were 8th seed in the western conference. They lost to the Chicago Blackhawks 4-1 in the quarterfinals.

Draft results:

Round 1 NO pick traded for Jason Pominville at the deadline.

Round 2: Gustav Olofsson Defenseman shoots left, height 6-2 and weight 190lb. He is graded a 7.0 and C rating. He is going to play college hockey for Colorado which developed some NHL talent. It will be some time before we truly see his potential.

Round 3: Kurtis Gabriel Right Wing shoots right, Height 6-3 and weight 189lbs. He is graded a 5.5 and B rating. He is a depth guy who can hit and has a big body. He fits in the theme of size and can hit that the Wild are using with their prospects. He has a strong work ethic and will make other prospects work.

Round 4: Dyan Labbe Defenseman shoots left, height 6-2 and weight 189lb. He is graded a 6.5 and C rating.  Dyan is a solid pick and hopes to improve upon the wealth of defenseman the Wild have in their system.

Round 5: Carson Soucy Defenseman shoots left, height 6-4 and weight 191lbs. He is a 6.0 and C rating. Soucy is coming off an MCL injury last season. He missed most of last year but was able to come back in the playoffs. He needs to add some mass to his big frame.

Round 6: Avery Peterson: Center, shoots left, height 6-2 and weight 181lbs. He is a 6.0 and D rating.  He does not skate well and uses his size to his advantage. Scouts are unsure where he will play next season.

Round 7: Nolan De Jong Defenseman shoots left, height 6-1 and weight is 165lb. He is a 6.0 and D rating. He needs to put on more weight for his frame. He has been called physically weak.

Round 7: Alexande Belanger Goalie shoots left, height 6-0 and weight 170lbs. He is a 6.0 and C rating. This was a depth pick because they are unsure of another goalie in their system.

Free agent signings: Keith Ballard Defenseman, Jonathon Blum D and Jon Laudry

Free agent losses/trades Cal Clutterbuck RW and Devin Setoguchi RW

Projection: The Wild’s big offseason was last offseason when they signed Zach Parise and Ryan Suter. They also acquired Jason Pominville. This offseason was very quiet compared to the last. The draft was unspectacular by many people’s standards. They did re-sign Nikolas Backstrom which was huge for them.  They didn’t lose much but didn’t gain much. Dany Heatley will be back healthy next season. Health will be a key if the Wild want to challenge for the Division crown. (All Rankings were gleaned from

Offseason Grade: C

What’s your ranking for the Wild?