The Minnesota Wild won the first-round of the 2024 NHL Draft

The Minnesota Wild won the first-round of the 2024 NHL Draft by making the best move.
2024 Upper Deck NHL Draft - Portraits
2024 Upper Deck NHL Draft - Portraits / Candice Ward/GettyImages

The Minnesota Wild took the bull by the horns on Friday night. They did what 10 other teams should have done and that is draft Zeev Buium out of Denver University. 

He was projected to go in the top five but he started to slip a little bit. By the time he got to 10, it was a shock that the New Jersey Devils didn’t take him. Then, the San Jose Sharks passed on him at 11. Both NJ and SJ took defensemen in those spots too. 

The Philadelphia Flyers came up at 12 but the Wild decided that enough is enough. They sent the Flyers a 2025 first-round pick to move up one spot from 13 to 12. That is where they took Buium. 

This was a draft-winning night made by the Minnesota Wild. He is going to be a big part of their blue line alongside Brock Faber for years to come. With stars like Kirill Kaprizov, Marco Rossi, Matt Boldy, and Joel Eriksson-Ek at forward, they are putting together a nice young core. 

The Minnesota Wild are going to love Zeev Buium for a decade or more

Buium belongs in the State of Hockey. He just won a National Championship with Denver at the Frozen Four which funny enough took place at the Xcel Energy Center. That came just a few months after winning World Junior Gold with Team USA. All the guy does is win. 

Why did Buium slip if he’s so good? Well, it’s a reminder as to why the same 7 or 8 teams consistently pick in the top 10. A good team like the Wild who are always competitive went up and grabbed a winner. Don’t be surprised if this leads to their first Stanley Cup. 

En route to winning the National Championship, he had 11 goals and 39 assists for 50 points. Those were all very good marks for a freshman defenseman. At the World Juniors, he had three goals and two assists for five points in seven games. 

This isn’t a defenseman that is all about offense either. He does a great job with his two-way game. He helped shut down stars like Cutter Gauthier, Will Smith, Ryan Leonard, and Gabe Perreault of Boston College in the National Championship. He did that all year against other top players as well. 

Denver was as good as they were in large part to his game. He learned a lot from head coach David Carle who is sure to be in the NHL as a coach one day. That will help pave the way for Buium as well. 

Playing with good players as the Wild have won’t be an issue for Buium. This was a great move for the Wild and one they won’t soon regret.