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Trade Watch: Kessel for Zucker?

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The Penguins and Wild are talking trade — does it make sense?

COLUMBUS, OH - FEBRUARY 26: Phil Kessel #81 of the Pittsburgh Penguins controls the puck during the game against the Columbus Blue Jackets on February 26, 2019 at Nationwide Arena in Columbus, Ohio. Pittsburgh defeated Columbus 5-2. Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images

An otherwise slow Wild news day was thrown for a bit of a loop when Josh Yohe of the Pittsburgh Penguins’ beat at The Athletic posted this:

The discussion is as follows:

The Wild would receive: Phil Kessel, and potentially Jack Johnson

The Penguins would receive: Jason Zucker, and potentially Victor Rask.

The potential pros for the Wild here are pretty numerous. Kessel has been nearly a point-per-game player for the Penguins over his four years in Pittsburgh, including 82 points in 82 games last year. He’s durable. He’s a scorer and a playmaker. And offloading Victor Rask allows Fenton to somewhat bury his blemish from last year when he acquired Rask for Nino Niederreiter, a trade that appears so far to be lopsidedly bad.

Kessel, however, is 31 years old. His defensive numbers (and effort) are sub-par. He tends to drive coaches crazy. And the other piece of the trade, defenseman Jack Johnson, is enigmatic at best, having struggled since signing a five-year deal last year. Is he one of those “change of scenery” guys? Who knows. Fenton’s track record with those types of players has been mixed so far. Donato, yes. Rask, no. Fiala? To be determined.

Now, this may be a moot point if Kessel doesn’t waive his no-trade clause ...

However, with the trade on the table, what say you, Wild fans? What do we think of the potential deal?

Poll

Kessel/Johnson for Zucker/Rask...

This poll is closed

  • 15%
    Love it. Pull the trigger now.
    (139 votes)
  • 18%
    Like it. Not a slam dunk, but the Wild win this deal.
    (166 votes)
  • 19%
    Meh. No one really wins here, or the benefits and negatives make it a wash.
    (180 votes)
  • 27%
    Don’t really like it. There are pros, but they’re outweighed by significant negatives.
    (249 votes)
  • 18%
    Hate this deal with the fire of a thousand suns.
    (170 votes)
904 votes total Vote Now