The roster overhaul of the Minnesota Wild is continuing as General Manager Bill Guerin on Wednesday traded forward Luke Kunin to the Nashville Predators, using the assets he got in return to draft a skilled center with the 37th overall pick in the second round of the NHL Draft.
Minnesota sent Kunin and the 101st selection in the draft to Nashville for forward Nick Bonino and the 37th and 70th picks in the draft. The Wild then used the 37th overall pick to select center Maat Khusnutdinov.
"Marat is an elite skater, two-way center with speed and has creative offensive vision," said Judd Brackett, director of amateur scouting for the Wild. Two picks later the Wild used the 39th selection to take defenseman Ryan O'Rouke, whom Brackett called a "strong skater" with "great character and grit."
Bonino is no slouch, either. The 32-year-old had 18 goals and 17 assists in 67 games with the Predators last season, and he put together another 35-point season in 2018-19 with Nashville.
In trading Kunin, the Wild are losing a 22-year-old forward who was the 15th overall pick in the 2016 draft. He has 23 goals and 29 assists in 131 career NHL games.
On Monday night, the Wild used the ninth overall pick in the draft to take center Marco Rossi, whom many have called the steal of the draft.
The Wild still owns the 70th overall pick (third round), in addition to #132 in the fifth round, #163 in the sixth round, and #194 in the seventh round.