The Minnesota Wild had to account for yet another disappointing season Wednesday as they cleaned out their lockers.
Among the day’s revelations was the extent of the injury to Thomas Vanek. He told the Star Tribune’s Michael Russo that he had broken and displaced ribs. He was frustrated having to watch the postseason from the sidelines. “It’s one of those injuries where you feel good some days,” he said, “and all it needs is time and time to heal.”
The injury occurred when he took a cross check to the ribs from Chicago’s Viktor Svedberg on March 29.
Vanek showed cognizance of buyout discussion surrounding him as well, saying that he wants to stay “but I understand the business.”
He showed a desire to stick with the Wild despite the swirling discussion. “I signed here because I truly love it here.”
It was a bad year for Vanek. He had career-low numbers across the board offensively, but he was still impactful for the team. The real qualm there is his salary against what he produced.
“I’m not happy with my year,” he said, “but I still believe I’m a 30 goal scorer.”
Vanek is due $7.5 millino in actual salary next season with a $6.5 million cap hit. A buyout would make that hit $1.5 next season and $2.5 million the follow season.
Dustin Nelson is the News Editor for The Hockey Writers. He’s a contributor to Hockey Prospectus, Hockey Wilderness, and writes a column for Rotowire. He’s also written for Gone Puck Wild, Wild Xtra, InDigest, Electric Literature, The Rumpus, Tiny Mix Tapes, Prefix Magazine & other publications. Have a tip? Email him at dlukenelson[at]gmail[dot]com.