At the trade deadline, the Minnesota Wild got surprisingly busy, moving key pieces including Charlie Coyle in return for forward Ryan Donato and a conditional fifth ound pick of the Boston Bruins.
And while Jason Zucker almost ended up with the Calgary Flames, he remains a difference maker for the Wild and has to learn to play without his best friend Coyle.
So, it could explain why he is being so hard on his new teammate Donato.
Donato, the son of former longtime NHLer Ted Donato, played 34 games for the Bruins this season, putting up six goals and nine points. He also has seven goals and 12 points in 18 games with the team’s AHL affiliate Providence Bruins. Since joining the Wild, he’s put up two tallies and nine points.
However, he’s still got work to do, according to Zucker, who spoke with Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet and discussed the Wild’s trade deadline acquisitions:
As we were finishing our conversation, I asked about Minnesota’s two newest players — Donato and Kevin Fiala . Zucker praised the latter before saying, “Donato’s got work to do.”
“Because he’s sitting next to me on the plane, and the last guy who sat there was Charlie Coyle , the best man at my wedding.”
Then he laughed.
“He’s good. He played the first couple of games here on adrenaline.”
While the kid might find it hard to sit with a demanding Zucker, we can understand why the Wild veteran acts the way he does. He’s lost his best man!
However, we are sure Donato will impress and be a key player shortly in Minnesota.