Saturday, May 31, 2014

2013-14 Season In Review: Jason Zucker

Photo: Sherri LaRose-Chiglo/Pioneer Press
Not a great year for Jason Zucker after his postseason performance to end 2013. Lets take a look back.


Minnesota (NHL): 21 GP, 4 G, 1 A, 5 P, 40 SOG
Iowa (AHL): 22 GP, 8 G, 5 A, 13 P, 80 SOG


This was a season that Jason Zucker would like to quickly put behind him. After not making the NHL team out of training camp, Zucker was suspended two games into the AHL season for an illegal hit to the head. After that Zucker seemingly alternated weeks between Minnesota and Iowa, before settling into the Minnesota lineupafter January 1st. Zucker played just over a month with the Wild before going down with a leg injury that sidelined him for the remainder of the season. When with Minnesota, Zucker found himself having trouble getting off the fourth line and out of Mike Yeo's doghouse for his lack of play in the defensive zone. It was the reason he alternated between Minnesota and Iowa in November and December, and it must be something he fixes for the 2014-15 season.


Status for 2014-15

Zucker is a curious story this summer. He is an RFA, and with most of the forward core returning next year (and perhaps a UFA signing on the horizon), there is little room for him on the NHL roster. He has never been a favorite of the head coach, and with an extension for Yeo looming, Zucker will have to do a lot to get in the good graces of his coach. There are basically two scenarios regarding Zucker's future that will unfold this summer: They re-sign him and give him another chance on the NHL roster in the hopes he can play more responsible defensively, or they make some sort of trade involving him to give him a fresh start somewhere else. Lets hope the former is the route the front office takes, but the latter choice would not be a surprise at all.

Follow Giles on Twitter @gilesferrell

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