When considering who the Wild might target in free agency, we have to focus our energies on the proper target market. With the two top lines looking pretty good, the bottom two lines are the key demographic, and the kids in Houston will get their shot at those spots. The Wild got their character guy in Darroll Powe, but if the right player became available for the right price, you just never know who Chuck Fletcher might pull the trigger on.
After the jump, we look at some grinders that might catch the eye of NHL GMs, and perhaps even one specific GM located in Saint Paul.
|2010 - Maxime Talbot||82||8||13||21||-3||66||0||2||2||117|
Current Cap Hit: $1.05 million
JS: No way. Yuck. I really, really don't like him.
Verdict: No. No no no no no no no.
Bryan: Talbot is cheap enough, he is a grinder, and he is younger than some of the other options. Main problem? He is a center. You may have heard, the Wild have a few of those. He also is not remarkably fast, and his offensive production is almost nil. If this were the best option available, or if the kids aren't the option, then maybe. I would rather see Cody Almond or another Aeros player get the spot. I am not opposed to Talbot, though and would not be angry should he be signed.
Verdict: One year, $1.2 million
Nathan: If he could play on the wing, I'd jump at the chance, but I don't see him wanting to leave Pittsburgh.
Verdict: One year, $1.67 million
|2010 - Ben Eager||68||7||10||17||4||120||0||0||1||84|
Current Cap Hit: $965K
JS: See Maxime Talbot
Bryan: Seventeen points, 120 PIMS? Unless Brad Staubitz is leaving, there is no need for Ben Eager. Thanks anyway.
Nathan: Million dollar body, five cent talent.
Verdict: I want so much for him to not suck.
|2010 - Michael Rupp||81||9||8||17||-4||124||0||0||1||81|
Current Cap Hit: $825K
JS: Pretty much a better Brad Staubitz, but his point total is likely inflated from playing with the Penguins. He plays a good, physical game and would be an interesting replacement for Staubz, as he had 12 majors and only one Game Misconduct, so simple misconducts. However, we have Staubitz for one more year, so there's no real need for a player like Rupp at this time.
Bryan: Mike Rupp intrigues me for a linemate with Powe and Clutterbuck, although I ma not sure how he fits, since he is not as fast. As JS said, he is a similar player to Brad Staubitz. There really isn't room for another player of that ilk on the team. He is, however, a great character guy, so if Chuck Fletcher wants to go that way, so be it. Much like with Talbot, I wouldn't be upset to see him signed, though.
Verdict: One year, $875K
Nathan: No. Not interested. We don't need more penalty heavy guys.
More targets tomorrow and Thursday. Make sure you check back, and check out the Hockey Wilderness Free Agency Page to keep up with all of the free agency coverage.