Could Wild winger Nino Niederreiter be on the move?
It appears that could be the case after Wild general manager Chuck Fletcher did not deny a report from Elliotte Friedman of Spotsnet that teams are calling to inquire about the 24-year-old winger.
Niederreiter had a career-high 25 goals in 2016-17 and as a restricted free agent will be eligible for arbitration this offseason. He will get a raise on the $2.7 million he made this season and is two years away from becoming an unrestricted free agent.
“We are actively listening … on everything,” Fletcher told Friedman.
Winger Mikael Granlund also is set to become a restricted free agent and could end up in arbitration. Granlund, who made $3.5 million this season, led the Wild with 69 points and had a career-high 26 goals in 81 games. Niederreiter finished fourth on the Wild with 57 points.
Both players slumped in the Wild’s disappointing first-round playoff loss to St. Louis. Granlund had only two assists and Niederreiter finished with one assist in the five games. Center Erik Haula is set to be a restricted free agent as well, meaning Fletcher will have to make a decision about which players he wants to keep and whether he wants to give any long-term extensions this offseason.
Part of the issue for the Wild will be the NHL salary cap. It was $73 million this past season and could be anywhere from $72 to $76 million in 2017-18. The figure, which is based on NHL revenue, will be announced in June. The Wild will have about $11 million in cap space, according to the website capfriendly.com.