Michael Russo has covered the National Hockey League since 1995. He has covered the Minnesota Wild for the Star Tribune since 2005, after 10 years of covering the Florida Panthers for the Sun-Sentinel. He uses “Russo’s Rants” to feed a wide-ranging hockey-centric discussion with readers, and can be heard weekly on KFAN (100.3 FM) radio and seen weekly on Fox Sports North.

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Jonas Brodin makes All-Rookie Team; More on Cal Clutterbuck's future

Posted by: Michael Russo under Rookies, Vikings draft, Wild off-season news Updated: June 29, 2013 - 12:20 PM

Sunday's 2 p.m. CT NHL draft is fast approaching (NBC Sports Network from 2-7 p.m.; NHL Network after 7 p.m.), and the Wild continues to shop Cal Clutterbuck and Tom Gilbert, especially.

Typically, deals like this come down on the draft floor or just before the draft because the Wild is looking for either a first-round pick in the Clutterbuck deal (teams are hesitant to give up firsts right now because this draft is so deep) or a second so it could potentially use two seconds to try to move into the first round.

And often times when picks are involved, the teams involved want to make certain first the player they want to take is still sitting there. For instance, in 2006 when the Wild acquired Pavol Demitra for a first and Patrick O'Sullivan, the L.A. Kings didn't agree to the deal until they were certain Trevor Lewis would still be there.

As you saw in today's story,  it is looking increasingly likely that Clutterbuck will be traded this weekend. He has value, he is a restricted free agent and the Wild's cap space is limited. The Wild is looking for a second and prospect, but perhaps the price can go up if there's a bidding war for Clutterbuck.

I do hear that GM Chuck Fletcher would prefer to trade Clutterbuck to the East. As I reported the other day, Fletcher had lunch Thursday with Maple Leafs GM Dave Nonis. Boston may make sense, too. In the West, as I reported last week, I hear Edmonton has shown significant interest. But I'd be lying if I said I know all the teams involved.

Again, Gilbert's future is almost certainly elsewhere. If he's not traded, the Wild will likely buy him out and create an extra $4 million of cap space. It'll also be interesting to see if the Wild moves guys like Devin Setoguchi or Kyle Brodziak or Torrey Mitchell. It's listening to offers at least.

As I've reported, with Jake Dowell likely going to be the fourth-line center next season and Mike Rupp also in the fold, Zenon Konopka is also on the block. Fletcher said recently that the Wild have a few guys who play the same role.

I've gotten lots of emails and tweets asking if the Wild's going after this guy and this guy and this guy and, uh, Vinny Lecavalier, in free agency. Again, unless the Wild frees up cap space, the answer to virtually everything right now is, "No." If space is freed, then we'll see then. Remember, if Clutterbuck is traded for a non-roster player and pick, that doesn't add to the Wild's roughly $3.6 million in cap space.

That cap space doesn't include unsigned restricted guys Clutterbuck, Jared Spurgeon and Justin Falk or unrestricted center Matt Cullen.

In other Wild news:

Wild defenseman Jonas Brodin, who finished fourth in the Calder Trophy race, was named to the All-Rookie team Saturday. He became the first Wild player in history to be honored with an All-NHL nomination.

Ryan Suter is a likely contender for First or Second-Team All-Star. That may come out tomorrow.
 
Last season, Brodin, the youngest defenseman in the NHL at age 20, drafted 10th overall in 2011, led all rookies in total ice time (1,044:35) and average time on ice (23:12 per game), becoming just the eighth rookie skater in league history to average more than 23 minutes a game.
 
Brodin, who scored 11 points in 45 games, led rookie defensemen with 18 takeaways and was fourth among all rookies with 60 blocked shots.
 
Other members of the All-Rookie team are St. Louis goalie Jake Allen, Edmonton defenseman Justin Schultz, Montreal forward Brendan Gallagher, Florida forward Jonathan Huberdeau and Chicago forward Brandon Saad.
 
--Also, the Wild has yet to extend a qualifying offer to potential restricted free agent Justin Falk, his agent confirmed to me. The Wild, which has been shopping Falk, has until Tuesday to decide if it wants to retain the defenseman’s rights.
 
If Falk isn’t qualified, he would become unrestricted when free agency opens Friday. I did get an email sent to me regarding a comment on one of the stories where a reader thought Falk was unrestricted already. He is indeed restricted.
 
More later if news breaks.

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