With the recent Jonas Brodin signing, the Minnesota Wild now have north of $27 million dollars invested in four defenders – the other three being Ryan Suter, Jared Spurgeon, and Matt Dumba. The back-end salary crunch is likely going to become problematic and dealt with sooner than later. The consensus is that Dumba, with the shortest term (an UFA in 2023/24), is rumored to be the odd man out.
If the Wild do not move Dumba, then they could lose his rights to the newly minted Seattle Kraken during the NHL expansion draft. At 26, the consistently productive Dumba will likely be of interest to a handful of NHL teams looking to upgrade the right side of there top 4 defencemen. Who might those NHL suitors be?
Dumba Headed North of the Border?
This morning, Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedmanan discussed the expected return for Dumba will probably be a forward, and preferably a center. In that case, there are two Canadian teams that may have interest in Matt Dumba including the Toronto Maple Leafs, and Winnipeg Jets. Another Canadian option – the Ottawa Senators. Could the Sens move several premium draft picks for Dumba?
The Maple Leafs and Dumba
From an outsider standpoint, the Maple Leafs seem to fit the bill quite nicely. The team could use a right-handed presence in the top four, and Dumba might pair well with either left-shot Jake Muzzin or Morgan Rielly.
With a future log jam in forward salaries, the Leafs may have been waiting on this kind of forward for defence swap to present itself. Another consideration regarding Dumba is that he and Rielly have history together – both former Western Hockey League stars, both born in 1994 , and both top 10 picks in the 2012 NHL Draft.
The Jets and Dumba
The Winnipeg Jets could be another likely candidate with interest. With the obvious losses on its back-end over the last 12 months, the Jets too could use some assistance on the right side. The Jets only have one contract that extends past 2021/22 on the back end – left handed Josh Morrissey (a fellow Calgarian and Dumba’s teammate on the 2014 Canadian World Junior team).
So too, after Kyle Connor signed a big, long-term deal last summer, the Jets will also have to navigate some big contracts up front. Especially considering the fact that young Finnish superstar Patrik Laine will become an RFA in 2021/22.
The Senators and Dumba
Lastly, with a plethora of premium picks in this year’s draft, perhaps the Ottawa Senators may take a run at Dumba. Could Sens GM Pierre Dorion entice new Wild GM, Bill Guerin, with a juicy pick, or combination of picks for the offensive defenseman?
The Wild are missing a 3rd round pick, and have a total of six selections in the upcoming 2020 NHL Entry Draft. What kind of pick haul would Guerin need to acquire Dumba in a trade?
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