It's no secret that the Western Conference is going to be a difficult landscape come playoff time and the Minnesota Wild are hoping to be a major player in it. In order to do so, it sounds as though the club is looking to add a goaltender before Wednesday's 3 p.m. ET trade deadline.
Minnesota has been connected to every available goaltender in the market, beginning with Ryan Miller then moving to the likes of Jaroslav Halak and Martin Brodeur. Following Miller's move to St. Louis, the Wild are left with limited options that seem to point towards Halak being traded for the second time in one week.
Larry Brooks of the New York Post tweeted that Minnesota is nearing a deal with the Buffalo Sabres to acquire Halak:
Just told by informed source that Wild has targeted Halak and are expected to get him from Buffalo...so that would be a NO re Brodeur....— Larry Brooks (@NYP_Brooksie) March 4, 2014
Halak was acquired from the Blues on Friday night as a piece in the Ryan Miller trade and will be an unrestricted free agent this summer. This makes him the perfect rental option for a team like Minnesota, who is looking for a short-term stopgap until long-term options become more clear.
The Wild's biggest question mark comes in Josh Harding, who played fantastically this season before complications with multiple sclerosis forced him to the sidelines. Harding hasn't played since the end of December and his future availability is something to consider given his medical issues.
This makes Halak a logical fit for Minnesota, as he would provide insurance and experience to a club with playoff aspirations.
I'm told Halak to the Wild is "close."— James Mirtle (@mirtle) March 4, 2014
In addition, rumors have indicated that Minnesota might explore Brodeur.
Brodeur has ties to the area as his two sons attend famed prep school Shattuck-St. Mary's, and has seemingly grown discontent with his relegation as a backup to Cory Schneider. Brodeur has hinted that he would welcome a trade and has openly expressed that he wants more playing time.
The only problem is Brodeur is at the end of his career and while his name brings value, his play arguably doesn't. More to that point: Brodeur is the most important player in the history of the New Jersey Devils. Trading him is almost unthinkable and the value of Brodeur remaining with the franchise for the entirety of his career is probably more valuable than a future mid-round draft selection.
Either way, it sounds like Minnesota will be adding a goaltender within the next 24 hours.