Bill Guerin told the media on Tuesday that he was happy with his defense the way it currently stands following Jonas Brodin‘s seven-year, $42M extension. “Not saying I won’t try to do anything else,” the Minnesota Wild general manager said. “It was kind of ‘first things first’ with Jonas. Let’s get him locked up, then see where we are.”
The Wild blue line sees Brodin, Jared Spurgeon, Matt Dumba, and Ryan Suter signed through at least the 2022-23 NHL season. Brodin’s new deal runs through 2027-28; Spurgeon’s contract goes until summer of 2027; and Suter’s long deal expires after the 2024-25 season.
A key part of Brodin’s deal is that the first four years feature a no-move clause, meaning he cannot be made available in the 2021 Seattle expansion draft. Same goes for Spurgeon and Suter, unless any of them agree to waive the clause to potentially join the Kraken.
Dumba is a different case. His contract expires after the 2022-23 season and his modified no-trade clause kicks in this off-season. He must submit a list of 10 teams he would not allow a trade to. Even with the Wild having a little more than $13M in cap space for next season, Guerin still needs to decide if he wants to bring back unrestricted free agents Alex Galchenyuk and Carson Soucy. Captain Mikko Koivu, also a UFA, has reportedly been told the team is moving on. Restricted free agents Jordan Greenway, Luke Kunin, and Nico Sturm also need new deals, so that cap space quickly shrinks if you hammer out extensions for all.
The salary cap ceiling for 2020-21 will be $81.5M.
Where does that leave Dumba, this year’s King Clancy Award winner, and his $6M cap hit? On the trade block.
Michael Russo of The Athletic reported last week that Guerin was getting calls on Dumba, and that was before Brodin’s extension was finalized. While Dumba’s cap hit is $6M, his actual salary for next season is $7.4M before dropping down to $5.2M in the final year of his current deal.
Dumba will draw plenty of interest as a top four defenseman who plays over 20 minutes a night regularly and hit the 50-point mark two seasons ago. The GM has made it known he wants to improve many areas of the Wild roster, specifically at center. A good return on the 26-year-old defenseman could help in his quest.