The Wild have made some progress in discussions with RFA winger Kevin Fiala, reports Michael Russo of The Athletic (subscription link). While the 25-year-old didn’t file for arbitration, Minnesota opted to elect to take him to a hearing earlier this month, a move that teams don’t often make as it gives Fiala the right to elect an award that would walk him to unrestricted free agency if he wanted. However, it ensures that he’ll be signed long before training camp. Fiala is coming off a 20-goal, 40-point season that has him well-positioned to earn a sizable raise on the $3MM AAV he had on his bridge deal. Submissions to the arbitrator will be required on Sunday with the hearing scheduled for a week from today so they’ll need to work quickly to get something done.
- Still with Minnesota, Wild prospect Jesper Wallstedt has opted to stay with Lulea of the SHL, notes Aftonbladet’s Jonathan Nilsson. The 18-year-old was the 20th-overall pick in last month’s draft which gives them the right to assign him elsewhere as entry-level deals for first-round picks supersede existing contracts overseas. However, some more time in the SHL certainly makes sense for Wallstedt, who posted a 2.23 GAA with a .908 SV% in Sweden’s top division last season.