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Minnesota Wild acquire veteran goaltender, but not the first rumored commodity

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The NHL trade deadline rumor mill song and dance started Tuesday morning with the Minnesota Wild set to acquire Martin Brodeur from the New Jersey Devils.

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The New York Daily News reported that the deal was agreed to upon by the two teams, but that Brodeur needed to approve the deal because of his no-trade clause. The Daily also reported that Brodeur wanted to play one more game in New Jersey before the trade.

The report failed to give any legitimacy to the trade rumor and the Wild quickly dismissed it. Nothing appeared likely to happen on that front and the rumors quickly turned to Jaroslav Halak of the Buffalo Sabres.

There was speculation that the Wild wanted Halak, but again nothing substantial.

Finally just after lunch time, the Wild announced a deal.

The Wild acquired Ilya Bryzgalov from the Edmonton Oilers for a fourth round draft pick. The pick which was previously acquired from the Buffalo Sabres in the Jason Pominville trade at last season’s trade deadline.

“Bryzgalov is a quality veteran that adds depth to the goaltending position for our team,” Wild General Manager Chuck Fletcher said in a statement.

Nothing was confirmed, but it was widely speculated that Fletcher tried to sign the Togliatti, Russia native during the offseason and early in the season.

Despite posting a 5-8-5 record with the Oilers this season, he has had some very good seasons in the NHL.

The Wild will continue to play Darcy Kuemper as the team’s No. 1 goaltender. Bryzgalov will be the backup and gives the team goaltending playoff experience.

Bryzgalov has played in 38 Stanley Cup playoff games and has posted a 2.81 goals against average and .908 save percentage in the postseason.

The Wild were not looking for someone to supplant or takes starts away from Kuemper, but were just trying to find another proven backup.

In acquiring the possible backup to the backup, the Wild gave away what will likely be the first pick in the fourth round. In what is considered a weak draft, the Wild gave up very little to get Bryzgalov.

Fletcher said that Niklas Backstrom has been shut down “most likely” for the rest of the season. He may need surgery again. Fletcher also hinted that Josh Harding may not be back this season.

Not having Backstrom and Harding further forced Fletcher to intensify his pursuit of an experienced goaltender.

Mitchell request trade

Renaud Lavoie of TVA Sports in Montreal is reporting that right wing Torrey Mitchell has requested a trade from the Wild. He has been relegated to fourth line minutes in recent games and has been pushed down the depth chart behind Jason Pominville, Charlie Coyle, Nino Niederreiter and Justin Fontaine. He has been playing on his off-wing left side in recent games.

According to Michael Russo of the Star Tribune, Mitchell denies the report.