Michael Russo: Wild gets third-round pick; plus an update on Granlund
The New Jersey Devils advanced to the Eastern Conference Finals on Tuesday night, and with that, the Wild acquired the Devils' 2013 third-round pick. That was the "conditionary" portion of that second draft pick it acquired in February's Marek Zidlicky deal. I'm sure the Devils don't mind. ... Wild prospects continue to be trucking along. Mikael Granlund is playing alongside Mikko Koivu for Finland in the world championships. Remember, Granlund can't be signed until after the world championships are complete. The Wild continues to say this is not a concern. The Wild loses his rights if unsigned after June 1. However, he doesn't become a free agent. He'd have to re-enter the draft. In other words, he wouldn't get to choose his eventual destination. There are all the reasons in the world for him to play here, including: 1. Opportunity. 2. He's a lock to make next year's roster. 3. Koivu. 4. Niklas Backstrom owns a piece of his current team, HIFK. 5. The Wild adores him. 6. The fans can't wait to see him. Again, Granlund has said publicly many times to me that his plan is to sign here and his agent has said the same thing.
Russo's Rants: www.startribune.com/russo