The Minnesota Wild have acquired defenseman Ian Cole from the Colorado Avalanche in exchange for defenseman Greg Pateryn. The Avalanche also retained $800k (or 18.8%) of Cole's contract.
Cole and Pateryn can be pretty comparable players. Both are third pairing defensive defensemen who have been on a number of teams. Cole had a really good 2019-20, and seemed like a fixture on the Avalanche defense for the season, but they traded him two games in. Pateryn missed 62 games last year, but he has two assists in three games so far in 2020-21, while Cole has none in two games. In past years, Pateryn has been very good in his own end, but brought nothing to the table offensively, while Cole had some similar numbers. This could be beneficial to Colorado as while they have a lot of left-handed shot defensemen, including top prospect Bowen Byram, who could have a spot now, they don't have much depth on the right side. Pateryn would slot in third behind Cale Makar and Erik Johnson, and likely ahead of Conor Timmins, who has played the 3rd and 4th NHL games of his career in this short season so far. This also clears up some cap space for the Avalanche. Pateryn has one year left with a $2.25 million cap hit, and Cole had one year left at $4.25 million. Add the $800k retained salary, and the Avs save $1.2 million here. The Wild had Pateryn starting over Brad Hunt to start the season mainly because Pateryn was right-handed. While they don't have a third right-handed shot anymore, Cole has frequently played on his off-side in previous seasons, and can again in Minnesota, likely with Carson Soucy as his partner. The Wild get the better player here, but now they have a little bit less money to work with if they want to add at the trade deadline.
Cole, 31, scored four goals with 22 assists for 26 points, plus a +21 rating, 122 blocked shots and a nine GAR in 65 games played for the Avalanche in 2019-20. In his NHL career for the Avalanche, St. Louis Blues, Pittsburgh Penguins and Columbus Blue Jackets, Cole has scored 26 goals with 112 assists for 138 points in 543 games.
Pateryn, 30, had three assists with 30 blocked shots in 20 games for the Wild in 2019-20. In his NHL career for the Wild, Dallas Stars and Montreal Canadiens, Pateryn has scored four goals with 37 assists for 41 points in 270 games.