Penguins acquire Jason Zucker from Wild for Alex Galchenyuk, first-round pick

Wild trade Jason Zucker to the Penguins for Alex Galchenyuk

They have the option of moving their first round draft pick to 2021 if they are not part of the lucky 16 squads which make the postseason come April.

The Penguins interest in Jason Zucker has been no secret.

Addison was a highly-touted prospect and seen as a good get by the Penguins at 53rd overall in the 2018 NHL Entry Draft, but the surge of rookie John Marino has slid Addison down the depth chart and ultimately made him expendable. He is in the second year of a five-year, $27.5 million contract. Imagine what he could do playing on the same line as Sidney Crosby. Galchenyuk will be an unrestricted free agent at the end of the current season. A dependable two-way player, Zucker has 132 goals, 111 assists and 243 points in 456 National Hockey League games, all with the Wild.

Zucker, who has 14 goals and 15 assists this season, had career bests of 33 goals and 31 assists in 2017-18.

When the Penguins moved on from Phil Kessel and acquired Alex Galchenyuk in the offseason, they were hoping he would be able to provide a dynamic edge to their team while producing offensively.

Galchenyuk, 25, has five goals and 12 assists in 45 games this season, his first with the Penguins. The Penguins are now in second place in the Metropolitan Division in the Eastern Conference. While the cost was steep, the hope is that they can bridge that gap while putting together another team capable of winning it all in 2020. The Wild (26-23-6) were four points out of the last playoff position in the Western Conference. It's unlikely they'll make it to the playoffs at this point - though definitely still possible, and the Wild are looking to retool on the fly as they keep an open mind towards the future.

The Wild are also getting prospect Calen Addison - a 19-year-old defenceman with plenty of offensive upside - and a conditional first-round pick in the upcoming draft.

The only current National Hockey League player heading to the Wild in this trade is Alex Galchenyuk.

With the Lethbridge Hurricanes of the WHL this season, Addison has 10 goals and 43 points through 39 games.



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