After nine seasons at the helm, the Minnesota Wild have informed general manager Chuck Fletcher that the organization is moving in a different direction. Fletcher’s contract is set to expire this summer and the Wild, according to team insider Michael Russo, will not be offering him a new deal.
The Wild were bounced from the playoff by the Winnipeg Jets last week in just five games. It marked the second year in a row that the Wild disappointed in the playoffs by winning just one game. Through Fletcher’s tenure, the Wild have established themselves as a consistent contender, as they reached the playoffs in each of the past six seasons, but the team failed to make it beyond the second round.
The nail in Fletcher’s coffin seemed to be the 2017 trade deadline. Despite being aware of the team’s difficult cap situation and impending struggle to navigate the expansion draft, Fletcher paid a massive price to acquire Martin Hanzal from the Arizona Coyotes. He then gave the Golden Knights Alex Tuch in exchange for the team selecting Erik Haula in the expansion draft. Those two combined to score 44 goals in Vegas’ inaugural season.
It isn’t known yet who will take over for Fletcher in Minnesota. As of right now, his right-hand man Brent Flahr will take over as the acting general manager. Bruce Boudreau and his coaching staff will also remain in their roles for now.