What started as an auspicious debut for Ryan Donato in Minnesota has come to an abrupt end, as the Minnesota Wild announced that the forward has been traded to the San Jose Sharks for a third-round pick in the 2021 NHL Entry Draft.
Donato came to Minnesota in a trade that sent Charlie Coyle back home to the Boston Bruins. The new Wild acquisition had a very strong start, earning two assists in his first game against the New York Rangers and finished his first five contests with a total of two goals and five assists, mostly on the road. Donato’s 2019-20 unfortunately didn’t build on his early success, as both former head coach Bruce Boudreau and current coach Dean Evason had trouble finding minutes for the Massachusetts native, earning an average of only 10:38 minutes per game, mostly on the fourth line. And despite sharing the team lead in even-strength goals with 14, general manager Bill Guerin decided to send Donato to a team where he could potentially make the most of additional playing time.
The 2021 third-rounder gives the Wild a selection that originally belonged to the Pittsburgh Penguins, obtained by the Sharks in a deal for Patrick Marleau. The move further ties Minnesota’s draft fate to the Penguins next year, as the Wild already own Pittsburgh’s first-round selection as compensation in the Jason Zucker deal during the 2018-2019 season.
The Wild may not be done dealing with the Sharks, as many NHL insiders have reported ongoing discussions that would send goaltender Devan Dubnyk to the west coast.
Stay tuned to Hockey Wilderness for all the latest trade news as the 2020 NHL Entry Draft approaches.