Fiala’s Out, For what?
In late June, our favorite GM Billy G broke the hearts of many Minnesota Wild fans. He sent out Stud winger Kevin Fiala to the LA Kings in exchange for the 19th pick and recently named Minnesota Gopher Captain Brock Faber. With rumors flying around the NHL circles that the New Jersey Devils are willing to part way with the #2 pick for Fiala, this may seem like a lackluster deal for wild fans. In reality with the whole league knowing we do not have enough cap space to sign him outright, we were essentially screwed. The money wasn’t there to make it work and there were no rabbits about to be pulled out of a hat on this one.
Fiala Out, Faber InIt’s never easy to say goodbye to a guy who just put up 85 points the previous year. That being said the Wild get some much-needed depth at defensemen. The move wasn’t splashy on Geurin’s part. But it looks to be a smart one. If you haven’t watched much Gopher Hockey in the past couple of years you missed out on a Gem. Faber is an extremely smart player, logs a ton of ice time, and is always finding his way around the puck. (Also, He’s one of us!)
The move isn’t going to improve the Wild immediately but sets them up for long-term success. An Olympian, Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year all by the age of twenty. Whether he’s a possible Matt Dumba replacement in a couple of years or a role player in the next couple of years Brock Faber seems like a quality get for the Wild.
Fiala’s ContractAs the move was set. Fiala and the kings had been working on an extension for the trade to be completed. Hauling in a 7-year 7.875 million Annual deal netting him over 55 million dollars total. He deserves it, and if he performs in the playoffs the way he did the previous year. We may have fleeced the kings. But, let’s not get ahead of ourselves. On to the last part of the trade.
The 19th Overall Pick
In a draft with a lot of unknowns outside of the top 3. The 19th overall pick may seem like nothing special. The Wild have a few options. Package 19 & 24 along with other things to move up in the draft for someone they love. Or sit back and test their luck in the middle of the draft. Here are a few notable 19th overall picks in previous drafts. 1990- Keith Thachuk, 2003’s Ryan Getzlaf, 2009 Chris Krieder, 2012 Andrei Vasilevskiy.
Overall Draft GradeIt may be few and far between, but the chance of taking a high-quality player is there. Simply put, the Wild got out of some of the cap issues that will plague them for this year and the next all while building towards the future with prospects to come. The wild weren’t paying him the money he deserved. While we got back a high-quality prospect. a first-round pick. All without having to wait and test our luck on draft night. I give it a B+. I also would ould be scared to give it anything lower knowing that Billy G knows where the 10k house is located.
7th-year Senior at UND. (not a doctor). 2021 6v6 sand volleyball champion. Read my thoughts on the Wolves, Gophers, and USMNT.
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