Minnesota Wild on the Run: Who Will Be Moving Come Summertime?

Nick MaxsonCorrespondent IMarch 9, 2010

WASHINGTON - NOVEMBER 13:  James Sheppard #51 of the Minnesota Wild skates against the Washington Capitals at the Verizon Center on November 13, 2009 in Washington, DC.  (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Although far from summertime, and the thought of the offseason is in nobody's mind for anyone in the NHL, it might for a few Wild players who may not be in Minnesota after this season.

We have already seen some moves so far from the Wild front office both in extensions, and parting ways.

Minnesota has already re-signed Cal Clutterbuck and Marek Zidlicky to extensions, both which have pleased both the players and fans.

On the other hand, the Wild have already parted ways with Eric Belanger in a trade to Washington for a second round draft pick this spring.

Even with these deals some big question marks remain for some Wild players as to their future here in Minnesota.

Derek Boogaard is a un-restricted free agent, although not much has been said about him i expect the Wild to re-sign him during the offseason because every team needs an enforcer, and the "Boogey Man" is our guy.

Owen Nolan is near the end of an all-star career and his future here may also becoming to an end.

Minnesota should re-sign him because although Nolan may not be the offensive gun-slinger he once was, he provides quality veteran leadership both on and off the ice and the Wild should cherish that.

Guillame Latandresse is a restricted free agent at the end of the year, however I would be very shocked as so the rest of the state of hockey if he was not re-signed with an extension after a career performance this year.

The next two players are the ones i believe will be on the move this summer.

Josh Harding is an unbelievable goaltender, and he has been a solid back-up for Minnesota. However I believe that he has earned a starting spot and many teams have expressed interest in Harding.

The Wild can feel safe dealing Harding after the debut of Anton Khudobin against Philadelphia where he won a 2-1 contest and looked very sharp.

According to Wild GM Chuck Fletcher, he has also has expressed that Backstrom is the goalie for now and the future.

He has also confirmed that talks may have taken place about a potential move with Josh Harding.

I believe he will go, and Wild fans can be sure that Backstrom and Khudobin are a deadly pair of goaltenders.

James Sheppard I believe is an easy out. Unless he makes are startling impression on the coaching staff and the front office, Sheppard's days in Minnesota are numbered.

He was sold as the next big talent from the previous management team and although Sheppard has size, speed and talent he has not shown much of his full talent here in Minnesota.

As with Latandresse, a change of scenery may be exactly what Sheppard needs. He is a young kid, and with the way trades have been as of late he should appeal to some team in the NHL and hopefully find a new home to learn and grow as a player.