Monday, September 27, 2010

Wild Ready to Fly to Europe

The Minnesota Wild have continued the house cleaning trend, as they prepare for their trip overseas for the NHL Premiere games in Helsinki. They have a combination of 14 players assigned and waived in order to be assigned to Houston of the AHL to clear up their roster and it looks like the Wild will be going forward with this group.

On the roster below, the Wild have three players who are injured, two will definitely be on the injured reserve at the beginning of the season (Harding and Sheppard), while Bouchard has started practicing with the team and remains optimistic that he could start the season, which suggests that he probably won't start on the IR immediately.

With Bouchard penciled into the line-up, this gives the Wild 15 forwards, nine defense and two goalies (numbers do not include Harding or Sheppard) and this will be the group that they take over to Europe, where they can have a few extra players for emergency purposes, but will be down to 23 when the team returns to North America.

Mikko KoivuMarek ZidlickyNiklas Backstrom
Andrew BrunetteCam BarkerJosh Harding
Martin HavlatBrent BurnsAnton Khudobin
Matt CullenNick Schultz
Antti MiettinenGreg Zanon
Guillaume LatendresseDrew Bagnall
Kyle BrodziakJustin Falk
John MaddenMarco Scandella
Cal ClutterbuckClayton Stoner
Eric Nystrom
Chuck Kobasew
Brad Staubitz
James Sheppard
Pierre-Marc Bouchard
Matt Kassian
Casey Wellman

Salary CapWith Harding out for the bulk of the season and Sheppard out until the new year, their cap numbers have been removed from my calculations, but the remaining 26 players and one buyout comes in at an annual projection of $58.8 million, just short of the cap ceiling this year.  Once a couple more of those numbers are removed and Bouchard's fate is actually decided, the Wild may have a little bit more flexibility near the trade deadline.

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