Welcome back to this week’s Gone Wild Mailbag! Our only question this week is when General Manager Bill Guerin will make his first trade.
Hey sorry for the week-long absence. College Midterms have a habit of taking the majority of your time.
Huge thanks to @MauerPower2018 for the question today. He asks:
Now every report in both of the Twin Cities said the same thing when it came to Bill Guerin’s first trade: No knee jerk reactions, taking due diligence- something I believe the fan base appreciates after the seeming lack of preparation done by the last regime.
That said, Bill Guerin will make his first trade before February First. Listen. This roster isn’t as good as I originally thought. I optimistically predicted Kevin Fiala to have twenty-five goals and thirty-two assists this year. He’s got one goal and one assist in nine games played. He’s been injured for three games and healthy scratched twice. He missed training camp because his contract was signed late in the offseason, something that could have been well avoided if Paul Fenton started contract negotiations earlier in the summer, and then dealt with some issues obtaining his visa. Simply put, he got a late start. That’s no excuse for his play. He still turns the puck over too much, is defensively aloof, and just does not have that “game breaker” ability Paul Fenton thought he had.
Yeah, Paul Fenton was not a good GM. He made his first trade on January 16th (Justin Kloos for Pontus Aberg, the first of many bad moves). Bill Guerin will make his first trade even before that. This roster has to make significant changes for the future. Guerin knows it. You know it. I know it. Let’s look at one of the most basic characteristics a hockey player can have: their handedness
Ryan Donato- Left
Joel Eriksson Ek- Left
Kevin Fiala- Left
Marcus Foligno- Left
Jordan Greenway- Left
Mikko Koivu- Left
Zach Parise- Left
Victor Rask- Left
Eric Staal- Left
Ryan Hartman- Right (wow one exists)
Mats Zuccarello- Left
Jason Zucker- Left
Luke Kunin- Right (There’s two)
See the issue? They’ll have at least two lines where they won’t have any righties to work the puck up the ice with. It slows down the breakout and creates easily defended situations for the opposition. This wasn’t an issue that crept up on the Minnesota Wild. We knew it at the draft. Even still, the Wild didn’t draft one right-handed forward.
This is what Bill Guerin has to address. He’s got to move some of our current assets to get future potential. Yes, this is officially the beginning of Gone Puck Wild’s campaign for #LoseForLafreniere and #BombForByfield. The conditions for this campaign will be outlined in a future post, but changes have to be made for the future. I have to imagine just about everyone is on the trading block, unless your last name is Eriksson Ek, Kunin, Zucker, Dumba, or Spurgeon. The Vultures are circling, but with the right moves, the Minnesota Wild will rebound.