Though not as busy as Monday, today has been an active day for the Minnesota Wild nonetheless. The team has announced that they have reassigned top forward prospect Charlie Coyle to the AHL’s Houston Aeros—the team’s minor league affiliate. It was also announced that tough guy Matt Kassian has been reassigned to the farm team, as well, after being placed on waivers by the big club on Monday.
Coyle, a 6’2” 205-pound forward originally drafted 28th overall in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft by the San Jose Sharks, had no points, a negative-1 rating, two penalty minutes and six shots in five NHL games this season—his first in the league. He looked good in his limited time with the team, playing a big game and creating scoring chances that the team just couldn’t capitalize on. We haven’t seen the last of Charlie Coyle, ladies and gentlemen.
Kassian, a big 6’4” 232-pound forward drafted 57th overall by Minnesota in the 2005 NHL Entry Draft, may have played his last game in Iron Range Red or Forest Green. Known more as a tough guy than a regular bottom-six grinder, the future looked bright for him when he was offered a one-way, two-year $1.15 million contract last offseason. However, the signing of Zenon Konopka, and the acquisition of Mike Rupp, may be the last nails in Kassian’s Wild coffin. Kassian has not played a game with Minnesota this season.
The interesting thing is that Minnesota now has only 12 forwards, seven defensemen and three goaltenders on the roster. There is no extra forward if one is needed; Minnesota has an empty roster spot, instead. I can’t help but wonder if there is either a trade brewing, or another call-up coming. If it’s the latter, look for it to be either Jason Zucker or Johan Larsson. What it likely means, however, is that the Wild brass are trying to give Bouchard another shot in the top-9, as he’s clearly useless on the fourth line. That said, don’t be surprised to see another call-up within the next week—heck, it could even be Coyle once again.
Gone Puck Wild will have more on this as the situation develops. Happy Valentine’s Day, all you hocky lovers!