The Minnesota Wild are in a unique situation. They have talent on their roster that can help them compete right now. Kirill Kaprizov, Matt Boldy, and Brock Faber are promising players currently making an impact in the NHL. However, they don't have a ton of cap space to build upon this due to some hefty buyouts in 2021. As a result, the NHL Draft is crucial for them.

This year, the Wild are picking 13th in the draft barring any trades. Minnesota missed the playoffs despite strong seasons from the three aforementioned players. Picking in the top 15 gives the franchise a chance to add a potentially dynamic player to their organization. Especially if the top 10 provides a surprise or two.

The list of potential targets is rather endless for the Wild. That being said, the list of players they can afford to pass on is shorter. And it provides a bit of a more interesting discussion. So, let's take a look at two players the Wild can afford to avoid at the 2024 NHL Draft.

Wild can pass on Stian Solberg

Minnesota Wild head coach John Hynes react s during the third period against the Winnipeg Jets at Xcel Energy Center. Winnipeg won 4-2.
Bruce Fedyck-USA TODAY Sports

Much has been said about Michael Brandsegg-Nygard, a Norewigan prospect who could be a top-15 pick in the NHL Draft. Brandsegg-Nygard is the best prospect to ever come out of Norway. But he is not the only potential first-rounder from his country. Defenseman Stian Solberg is another prospect garnering attention through this process.

Solberg is a bit of a late riser in this process, though. The left-shot blueliner has played his entire career in the Norwegian league system to this point. This has its advantages and disadvantages. The advantage is that he has played against grown men and legitimate professionals for four seasons now. However, the level of competition certainly isn't comparable to other leagues.

Solberg has a lot of upside, but the Wild should have better options with more upside available at 13th overall. For example, London Knights defenseman Sam Dickinson could be available at Minnesota's pick. While it's certainly easy to get caught up in recent trends, the Wild can afford to pass on Solberg at the 2024 NHL Draft.

Igor Chernyshov would be a reach for Wild

Igor Chernyshov is another prospect who has a first-round grade on him. However, he is not exactly a fast riser like Solberg. In fact, his draft stock has remained rather steady since the beginning of the season. Chernyshov is an older player at 18 years old, and that gives him a bit of a higher floor.

Chernyshov plays a more modern game. He is a big, strong winger who can drive offense and push the play up the ice in transition. The Russian winger is a power forward, but he isn't undisciplined. Chernyshov knows when it's time to give his team a jolt and when it's time to reign things in on the ice.

The Wild could certainly use a player like this. However, his ceiling is not the highest. He figures to play a role on a team's top-nine, but that can range from either the first line or the third line. With the 13th overall pick, Minnesota can find players with a slightly lower floor but a higher ceiling.

For example, US National Team winger Cole Eiserman could be available at 13. The American star is one of the best goal-scorers in the draft, and the best scorer in US National Team Development Program history. Granted, Chernyshov is a more well-rounded player than Eiserman. But Eiserman has higher potential and could form a frightening scoring punch alongside Kirill Kaprizov and Matt Boldy.

The Wild certainly have a lot of options at the 2024 NHL Draft. And Chernyshov wouldn't necessarily be a bad pick. But better, more upside options are likely to be available at 13. Minnesota can afford to pass on Chernyshov as a result.