Chuck Fletcher made the anticipated move of acquiring hometown hero and former Hobey Baker winner, Jordan Leopold. Leopold is a gritty defender with the ability to move the puck. Most importantly for the Wild, he is a left-shot defenseman and instantly makes the Wild a deeper team by adding another NHL-ready body to a banged up D-corps. The move provides the team some flexibility should one of the youngsters underperform or another Defenseman get hurt.
Leopold stands at 6'1" and 200 pounds. He was drafted in the 2nd round of the 1999 draft by the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim and has spent time in Calgary, Colorado, Florida, Pittsburg, Buffalo, St. Louis and most recently Colombus. Leopold played for the UMN Golden Gophers from 1998-2002 and was part of the 2002 National Championship team, the season in which he wont the Hobey Baker award.
Leopold's most productive season came in Buffalo in 2010-2011 when he put up 35 points. He had a scary incident in the playoffs the year as a member of the Penguins, when he suffered a crushing hit from Andy Dalton and was knocked unconscious on the ice for several minutes and suffered a concussion. He has had a continuing history of concussions throughout his NHL career.
Leopold is a much more trustworthy performer than the man traded away for his rights, Justin Falk. Fletcher packaged Falk and a 5th round pick to the Columbus Blue Jackets for Leopold to continue his string of low-cost improvements for the team. This move also backs up the statements that the team is confident in what is has and just wanted to protect the roster heading toward the playoffs.
Here is Leopold's HERO chart, care of Own The Puck.