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 right wing Nick Johnson.
Number – 25; Height – 6-1; Weight – 183; Hometown – Calgary, Alberta; 2011-12 Salary – $550,000. Qualifying Offer – $605,000.
Statistics: 77 games played, eight goals, 18 assists, minus-six rating and 45 penalty minutes (Minnesota Wild).
Strengths: He has scoring ability around the net. He has good size and the ability get to the front of the net. He is most effective when playing a physical game with an edge.
Weaknesses: He is not a top-six forward and will never be an elite scorer. He does not have great speed and struggles with inconsistency.
Outlook: He is a secondary scoring forward. He participated in the All-Star rookie festivities this season in Ottawa, but cooled off the second half of the season. His game went south about the same time the team’s did in early-to-mid-December. He was playing well on the third line, but was out of his element as he was forced up the depth chart. He will get a qualifying offer and should be back in his successful third or fourth line role next season. The worst case scenario is that he is a depth forward for the management and coaching staff.