StaTuesday: Looking back at Jason Zucker’s career with Wild

One of the most beloved players in franchise history is packing his bags for Pittsburgh.

Forward Jason Zucker was traded to the Penguins on Monday in exchange for 25-year-old winger Alex Galchenyuk, defenseman prospect Calen Addison and a 2020 first-round pick.

While the Wild got an intriguing return that fits their need to rebuild the roster with young talent, Zucker will be missed around the State of Hockey.

We’ll take a minute to recognize his career in Minnesota.

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Raised in Las Vegas, Zucker starred for two seasons for the University of Denver before being selected in the second round (59th overall) in the 2010 draft.

Zucker made his NHL debut on March 29, 2012 and tallied his first career points two days later with a two-assist performance against Los Angeles. His first career goal came the following season on Feb. 17, 2013, a game-tying goal in Minnesota’s 3-2 win over Detroit.

Zucker played his first full season with the Wild in 2015-16 and scored 13 goals in 71 games. The following season, the forward led the NHL in plus-minus with a +34.

After signing a juicy five-year, $27.5-million deal with the Wild in 2018, Zucker rewarded the team by posting a career-best 33 goals and 31 assists in 82 games the following season.

Zucker’s name can be found all over the Wild’s all-time record books.

Always a streaky player, Zucker tallied 15 multi-goal games and two hat tricks (Nov. 9, 2017 and March 7, 2019), making him one of five Wild players to log more than one hat trick with the club.

He ranks fourth in goals scored (132), fifth in game-winning goals (22), fifth in shots (1,049), fifth in goals per game (0.29) and ninth in total points (243). Zucker also suited up for 456 games with the Wild, which is right behind his buddy Charlie Coyle (479) for 10th in franchise history.

Marian Gaborik 219
Mikko Koivu 203
Zach Parise 187
Jason Zucker 132
Andrew Brunette 119
Nino Niederreiter 110
Eric Staal 109
Pierre-Marc Bouchard 106
Brian Rolston 96
Mikael Granlund 93

Statistics aside, Zucker and his wife Carly were two of the most active public figures in the community. Zucker’s #Give16 campaign, inspired by 9-year-old cancer patient named Tucker, fundraised over $1 million dollars for the University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital. The Zuckers used that money to build the Zucker family suite and broadcast studio, which allows children and families to watch Wild games while staying at the hospital.

Their efforts earned Zucker the 2019 King Clancy Memorial Trophy, an annual award given to an NHL player who makes a big impact in his community.

While the trade was a good move for the Wild, Zucker and his family will be missed in the State of Hockey.