The Minnesota Wild have 14 restricted free agents.
Wild General Manager Chuck Fletcher and head coach Mike Yeo have a decision to make on all the free agents.
The Wild currently have 31 players under contract for next season; each team is allowed a maximum of 50.
With the 19 remaining contracts, at least one will be used on drafted players that have expiring rights this summer. Also, there is cap space to try and lure a big name free agent or two to Minnesota.
Here is restricted free agent defenseman Kris Fredheim.
Number – 59; Height – 6-2; Weight – 170; Hometown – Campbell River, British Columbia; 2011-12 Salary – $530,000. Qualifying Offer – $577,500.
Statistics – 3 games played, minus-two rating and two penalty minutes (Minnesota Wild); 73 games played, three goals, nine assists, minus-one rating and 29 penalty minutes (Houston Aeros).
Strengths: He is a stay-at-home defenseman that relies on his positioning. He is steady in the defensive zone and makes few mistakes.
Weaknesses: He does nothing really well and provides almost no offense.
Outlook: He made his NHL debut for the Wild last season and showed me very little. But, he has just two seasons of professional hockey experience, so there is time. The contract is cap friendly, so the money is worth re-signing him. The issue is the number of contracts, both overall and among defensemen. Of the 31 players under contract, 12 are defensemen, including four that are beginning their entry level contracts this season.