Well, this was unexpected.
On Tuesday, the Minnesota Wild placed forward Rem Pitlick on waivers, giving an opportunity to all 31 other NHL teams to snatch up the young winger.
Pitlick, 24, was claimed by the Wild on waivers from the Nashville Predators at the beginning of this season and has been in and out of the lineup during his time as a member of the State of Hockey. In total, he has appeared in 20 games this season, earning six goals and 11 points in the process, all while averaging less than 10 minutes a game.
Although Pitlick has been hit and miss through his Wild tenure — returning to Minnesota after starring for the Golden Gophers and developing his game at Shattuck St. Mary’s — there is no question that some team is going to look at his simple boxscore and pick him off the waiver wire. Especially with the injuries some teams are dealing with, it might be an easy snag. And for his original team, the Predators, if they are the team to claim him, he does not require waivers to be sent down to the taxi squad or AHL.
With all of that in mind, Pitlick’s time at his home state might be over by Wednesday at 1:00 p.m.
At least he got to play and even score a goal during the Winter Classic.
For the Wild, this signals a return of some major players. Minnesota already have Jordan Greenway and Joel Eriksson Ek returning to practice on Tuesday, but considering that Pitlick was in Kirill Kaprizov’s spot during practice, are the Wild showing their hand that their Russian star will be available to play on Friday against the Anaheim Ducks? We shall see.
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