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Minnesota Wild 2014 free agent analysis: Nate Prosser

Nate Prosser was one of the more successful college free agents signed by Minnesota Wild General Manager Chuck Fletcher. He enters unrestricted free agency this summer.
Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

The Minnesota Wild have few roster spots with the emergence of their young stars. However, a few players still need to supplement the roster. The Wild enter the offseason with 14 unrestricted free agents and eight restricted free agents.

Here is unrestricted free agent defenseman Nate Prosser.

2013-14 Team(s): Minnesota Wild (NHL)

2013-14 Statistics: 53 games played, 2 goals, 6 assists, 8 points, plus-2 rating, 58 penalty minutes, 2 game-winning goals, 30 shots on goal (regular season); 10 games played, plus-2 rating, 12 penalty minutes, 7 shots on goal (playoffs)

Outlook: Prosser has played above expectations since signing with the Wild as a college free agent in 2010. The Elk River native was a star on the Colorado College blue line, but was not drafted nor was he a highly sought after free agent.

The Wild took a chance and he has blossomed into a steady third-pairing defenseman. Despite playing well, he has spent most of the last three seasons in and out of the Wild lineup. Often, the coaching staff has cited a number’s game as the reason for his press box time.

Prosser, a right-handed shot, recorded two game-winning goals, in consecutive games, and posted the fourth best plus/minus rating among defensemen on the Wild that played at least two games last season.

The coaching staff has lauded his attitude when he did not complain about being a healthy scratch. The statistics suggest he should be in the regular lineup, but, apparently, the numbers game says he is the odd-man out. The Wild should try to re-sign him, but Prosser should test the market and look for an opportunity to be the fifth or sixth defenseman.