Sunday NHL Insider: Throwing cold water on Vanek-to-Wild talk

  • Article by: MICHAEL RUSSO , Star Tribune
  • Updated: November 3, 2013 - 8:11 AM

Remember all the talk of Thomas Vanek’s return? Well, hold off on that.

hide

Former Gophers standout Thomas Vanek was traded by the Sabres, but not to the Wild — rather, he was dealt to the Islanders, for Matt Moulson and a pair of draft picks.

Photo: Frank Franklin II • Associated Press,

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

When Thomas Vanek was traded to the Islanders last Sunday night for the hefty price of Matt Moulson and a first- and second-round pick, my TweetDeck looked like the “Price is Right” wheel. Frantic questions propelled in from Wild fans:

 

Q: Why didn’t the Wild trade for Vanek?

A: 1) Like the majority of teams in this salary-cap gridlocked league, the Wild currently doesn’t have the cap room; 2) Why would the Wild trade for someone it could potentially sign next summer anyway? 3) The Wild already sent Buffalo prospects Matt Hackett and Johan Larsson and a first- and second-round pick for Jason Pominville in April. Do you really want the Wild to singlehandedly stock the Sabres’ prospect pool?

 

Q: The Vanek trade has to come with a contract extension, right?

A: 1) No. 2) Yes, the Islanders really are that crazy.

 

Q: Shouldn’t the Islanders have traded for Sabres goalie Ryan Miller instead since goal-scoring isn’t their problem and stopping the puck is?

A: 1) Yes. 2) Yes, I already told you, the Islanders really are that crazy.

 

Q: Does this ruin the Wild’s chance of signing Vanek next summer?

A:It was by the 50th one of these Twitter questions that I realized we might have allowed the Vanek-to-Minnesota-in-2014 conjecture run a wee bit out of control.

In a large way, the media (OK, me) is to blame for this Vanek frenzy because we have talked incessantly about the Austrian sniper being destined for Minnesota in the same realm as Zach Parise and Ryan Suter coming to the Wild in 2012.

We have written about Vanek in the newspaper and blogs, talked about him on radio and TV. We’ve talked about the link with Pominville, Vanek’s buddy and linemate in Buffalo. We’ve reminded how Vanek starred at the U and trains at Mariucci during the summer. We’ve talked about how Vanek lives in Stillwater, and who wouldn’t want to raise their three boys in this wonderful state?

Plus, Vanek loves walleye and chicken wild rice soup. (OK, I made that up. But, it’s probably true).

We’ve even thrown out the price tag of what it would likely cost the Wild to sign Vanek — roughly six years, $40 million. The Wild would have that room next summer thanks to Dany Heatley’s $7.5 million conveniently coming off the books.

And we’ve pointed out over and over that the offensively impoverished Wild still lacks a pure goal scorer like Vanek, whose 254 goals since the start of 2005-06 are seventh-most in the NHL over that stretch.

  • related content

  • Michael Russo's short takes

    Saturday November 2, 2013

    Gaborik job evaluationThe Columbus Blue Jackets haven’t had any contract talks regarding an extension for former Wild forward Marian Gaborik.“I’d...

  • The Wild's week ahead

    Saturday November 2, 2013

    the wild’s WEEK AHEADSunday: vs. New Jersey, 7 p.m. (FSN)Tuesday: vs. Calgary, 7 p.m. (FSN)Thursday: at Washington, 6 p.m. (FSN)Saturday:...

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Boston - R. De La Rosa 11:37 AM
Toronto - M. Stroman
San Francisco - T. Hudson 12:05 PM
Philadelphia - C. Hamels
Texas - C. Lewis 12:05 PM
NY Yankees - B. McCarthy
Houston - S. Feldman 2:35 PM
Oakland - J. Samardzija
Miami - H. Alvarez 6:10 PM
Atlanta - A. Harang
San Diego - T. Ross 7:05 PM
Chicago Cubs - E. Jackson
NY Mets - D. Gee 7:10 PM
Milwaukee - M. Garza
Chicago WSox - H. Noesi 7:10 PM
Minnesota - P. Hughes
Cleveland - C. Kluber 7:10 PM
Kansas City - D. Duffy
Detroit - M. Scherzer 9:05 PM
LA Angels - G. Richards
Baltimore - W. Chen 9:10 PM
Seattle - H. Iwakuma
Montreal 9:00 PM
Real Salt Lake
Calgary 8:00 PM
Edmonton
Winnipeg 7/25/14 9:00 PM
Brt Columbia
Ottawa 7/26/14 6:00 PM
Hamilton
Toronto 7/26/14 9:00 PM
Saskatchewan
Winnipeg 7/31/14 6:00 PM
Hamilton
Toronto 8/1/14 6:00 PM
Montreal
Brt Columbia 8/1/14 9:00 PM
Calgary
Saskatchewan 8/2/14 6:00 PM
Ottawa
New York 9:00 PM
Seattle
Phoenix 9:30 PM
Los Angeles
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Which local pro team are you most excited about?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close