Wild get Stewart as Buffalo-to-Minnesota pipeline continues

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Jason Pominville, Matt Moulson and now, Chris Stewart.

For the third consecutive deadline, Minnesota GM Chuck Fletcher has gone shopping for a forward in Buffalo — this time, he’s plucked Stewart in exchange for a second-round pick at the 2017 NHL Entry Draft.

Stewart, 27, has been on the trade block for over a year after arriving in Buffalo last season from St. Louis. A two-time 20-goal scorer, he’s got the skills and size (6-foot-2, 230 pounds) to be a quality power forward but has lacked consistency throughout his seven-year NHL career, and is now on his fourth team.

Stewart is a pending UFA, though, and should be motivated to play for a new contract on a Minnesota team that is fighting for its playoff life. Speaking of contracts, sounds like Buffalo will retain half of Stewart’s $4.2 million ($4.15M cap hit) in this deal:

It’s also worth noting that, in keeping with the theme above, the Wild also acquired Thomas Vanek in the offseason, though not directly from Buffalo — he went from the Isles to the Habs before signing with the Wild last summer.