What Should The Minnesota Wild Do With Cal Clutterbuck?

By Randy Holt
Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

Between the monster additions that they made last summer during free agency, as well as at this year’s trade deadline, the Minnesota Wild head into next season with their roster in pretty good shape. Of course, a team that was a no. 8 seed and found themselves eliminated in the first round will face some decisions with their roster.

Perhaps the biggest decision that the Wild will need to make in regard to their current players, is what to do with bruiser Cal Clutterbuck. Set to become a restricted free agent this summer, one has to wonder if the Wild will look to bring back or trade the fan favorite.

Restricted free agents are always intriguing, as there are a variety of roads that a club could choose to go with such a situation. It’s typically more interesting when that restricted free agent is either a young up-and-comer, or a star just waiting for an offer sheet. Clutterbuck is neither.

At this point in his career, there’s no secret as to what you’re getting from Clutterbuck. He’s not going to get out and notch a ton of points, especially this season. The 2013 campaign was one that saw Clutterbuck struggle quite a bit from a production standpoint, as he finished with 10 points in 42 games.

Regardless of the production, as disappointing as it is, we saw more of the same in the physical department from Clutterbuck. He finished with 155 hits on the season, proving to be that consistent source of energy once again. But what is that actually worth to the Minnesota Wild?

There is a fork in the road for the Wild in regard to this Clutterbuck situation. They either sign him, let him walk and take the compensation, or trade him. Signing him seems like the most likely. Teams don’t seem to eager to surrender draft picks for an energy guy worth 10 or 15 goals in a season. They can find those anywhere.

In the end, it’s very likely that Clutterbuck will end up back in Minnesota, on a multi-year deal at a slight raise from what he’s making now. But it will be interesting to see if other teams consider taking a look at him this summer, whether on the trade market on draft day, or sending an offer sheet in free agency.

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