Minneapolis-St. Paul Star Tribune writer Michael Russo points out that Dany Heatley's injured shoulder could create cap problems for the Minnesota Wild.
Before getting hurt, Heatley and his $5.7 million cap hit were obvious candidates for one of the team's two compliance buyouts. However, injured players can't be bought out and it's unclear if Heatley will be healthy in time for the first buyout window, which begins 48 hours after the Stanley Cup final ends and stops when free agency opens on July 5. According to Russo, the Wild currently have a little over $6 million to fill out the roster and sign a No. 1 goaltender, which is hardly enough. Russo speculates the team could deal several players, such as Devin Setoguchi, Kyle Brodziak, Cal Clutterbuck and/or Tom Gilbert. There's also a second buyout window later in the summer that could give the Wild some breathing room, but the Wild would need at least one of their two arbitration-eligible players to file for arbitration.
Marco Scandella has agreed to a two-year deal with the Minnesota Wild.
Scandella's new contract comes with a $1.025 million annual cap hit. He was scheduled to become a restricted free agent this summer. The 23-year-old has four goals and 15 points in 89 career NHL games.
Jonas Brodin finished fourth in Calder voting.
Brodin received 24 first place votes as he finished behind Jonathan Huberdeau, Brendan Gallagher and Brandon Saad in voting for the top rookie. It was a very close vote as there were many contenders but no runaway leader. Brodin led all rookies in ice time at 23:12 minutes per game and looks to be a permanent fixture on the Wild blueline for the next 10 seasons.
Josh Harding has won the 2013 Masterton Trophy.
This award honors players that demonstrate, among other things, perseverance and dedication. Harding is continuing his NHL career after being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. He missed a significant portion of the season, but after his return he ended up playing against the Chicago Blackhawks in the first round of the playoffs. Although Chicago ultimately won that series, Harding held his own. Sidney Crosby and Adam McQuaid were the other nominees for the award.
Stephane Veilleux has inked a two-year, two-way contract with the Minnesota Wild.
He dress in two playoff games with the Wild, but didn't play for Minnesota at all during the regular season. In 33 games with the AHL's Houston Aeros, he had eight points and 45 penalty minutes.
The Minnesota Wild haven't engaged in serious talks with Niklas Backstrom yet.
Backstrom is eligible to become an unrestricted free agent this summer. "Right now, we're just waiting for Minnesota to finish their meetings and go from there," Backstrom's agent, Jeff Kowall said. "Our first step is to see what Minnesota's plans are, and hopefully there's something to be worked out." Minnesota will have problems working Backstrom under the cap unless they do something big like trading or using an amnesty buyout on Dany Heatley's contract. Wild GM Chuck Fletcher has previously expressed an interest in re-signing their 35-year-old starting goaltender.
Matt Cullen, 36, is an unrestricted free agent this summer but he sounds as if he'd like to re-sign with the Minnesota Wild.
"I feel good about where my game and body is at," Cullen said. "I know I'm getting older and later in my career, but I feel better than I've ever felt on the ice. It helps keep you feeling young and excited get work this summer." He added: "I understand (the Wild has) serious cap issues. I'll say this, I'm anxious to hear from them and I really commend the job that (general manager) Chuck Fletcher has done. Obviously getting Zach (Parise) and Ryan (Suter) speaks for itself, but man, the job (Jonas) Brodin and (Charlie) Coyle did this year, and Zucks (Jason Zucker) to a certain extend when he was here. The impact those guys had, that's pretty unique to have guys that play that kind of role and big minutes and be so good at such a young age. So I'm very optimistic about the future."