Looks like the highest scoring center UFA to be on a non-playoff team is Bo Horvat. He’s had a pretty consistent and solid run in the NHL. Not fragile or soft but also not cheap or under the radar.
Therefore, do the Wild have the ability to and should they pursue Horvat? Financially, they could likely make it work. Brackett should have some familiarity with the player from time in Vancouver.
We’ve already suggested Dumba to Vancouver but that’s probably not happening. Who would the Canucks want in a trade assuming Horvat could be signed to a long contract in MN? What could MN do with their forward lineup and what players would be squeezed out?
Horvat would be a top center who can score and plays a hard game. Exactly what the Wild need and have been lucky to get that from Hartman and Gaudreau to this point. Is that a solution for long-term succes, stop-gap players? Does the Wild management think 2M AAV role-player centerman are the answer? Just cause it’s been working well doesn’t mean they’re settled on that as the overall strategy. It appears despite the cap penalties the Wild have the ability to do a move and they have valuable assets that might not be missed from the current roster due to the depth MN has built up. There’s some nice free agent college players who could be brought in who wouldn’t be big cost guys that compensate for assets the Wild give up.
Should the Wild pursue a trade for Bo Horvat at the deadline or keep looking for top centers forever?