Reports: Penguins keeping 2020 pick from Jason Zucker trade

Minnesota will get Pittsburgh's first-rounder in 2021 instead.
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Jason Zucker

After the Pittsburgh Penguins failed to advance to the playoffs in the best-of-five qualifying round, it was expected that they would take advantage of the situation and hold onto the first-round pick that they sent to Minnesota in the Jason Zucker trade. 

That's now officially the plan, according to multiple reports. The pick was only protected if Pittsburgh failed to make the playoffs, which they were bound to reach had the COVID-19 pandemic not forced the NHL to change the playoff structure. 

The 2020 first-rounder now stays with Pittsburgh while the Wild will receive their 2021 first-round selection. The 2021 first-round is unprotected, so the best-case scenario for the Wild is if Pittsburgh is horrible in 2020-21, though that's highly unlikely. 

Minnesota acquired the pick in the trade that sent Jason Zucker to Pittsburgh on Feb. 10. The Wild also acquire center Alex Galchenyuk and Calen Addison, a 20-year-old defenseman prospect. 

Minnesota picks ninth in the Oct. 9 NHL Draft while the Penguins own the 15th pick. 

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