There’s Four Big Questions facing the Minnesota Wild in 2020-21.
With the 2020-21 NHL Season now within reach, we are flying through our Season Previews and today it is the turn of the Minnesota Wild.
It is fair to say that the Wild are a bit like an old sports car that runs fine but it is just missing that little bit of oomph, it takes you only so far but never quite far enough, and it is more reliable rather than a thrill ride.
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That is the Minnesota Wild right now.
After years of being just good enough to make the Stanley Cup Playoffs but not good enough to make it past the First Round, General Manager Bill Guerin was brought in to blow this thing up and make the Wild a more exciting team that could compete to a high-level on a consistent basis.
He has only been in the job for around a year and it has been a bit of a slow process so far, but Rome wasn’t built in a day as they say, and this is going to be a long rebuild on the fly for the Wild who are trying to get younger and better while still being competitive.
Granted, they will benefit from being probably the fourth best team in the West Division, so there is a path to the postseason for this team as it is currently constituted.
So, on that note, let’s delve into the Four Big Questions facing the Minnesota Wild in the 2020-21 NHL Season…
4. Will Matt Dumba get traded at any point in 2020-21?
There is no doubt that Matt Dumba is a legit high-end defenseman in the National Hockey League, and he, along with Jared Spurgeon, Jonas Brodin and Ryan Suter give the Minnesota Wild one of the strongest and most dynamic top-four groups in the NHL.
However, there is a major caveat at play here.
As good as Dumba is, and he’s very good, the Wild have $30,980,128 wrapped up in their blueline for the 2020-21 season and most of that is committed to their top-four.
Plus with the dreaded 2021 NHL Expansion Draft looming, there are some hard decisions to be made for all 31 NHL franchises, well 30 because the Vegas Golden Knights aren’t taking part, and Minnesota is no different.
With Spurgeon, who was recently announced as the team’s new captain, Brodin and Suter all under contract for at least the next five seasons, Dumba would probably have to be left unprotected and there is no way that the Seattle Kraken wouldn’t take a 26-year-old defenseman about to hit his peak.
Therefore, it is feasible that General Manager Bill Guerin will look to trade Dumba at the NHL Trade Deadline in order to avoid losing a very, very good player for nothing. Would losing Dumba hurt? Of course it would.
After all, the No. 7 overall pick in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft was a 50-point scorer as recently as two years ago, and he’s a player who can play in all situations and log big, big minutes.
But, it isn’t really a choice between losing a player for nothing or getting back valuable assets for him, especially for a team like the Minnesota Wild who are trying to rebuild on the fly and draft picks and prospects would help that greatly, even if it meant losing a genuine stud in Matt Dumba.