The Minnesota Wild fired embattled GM Paul Fenton last week after only one season on the job. Owner Craig Leipold, who knew Fenton from his days owning the Nashville Predators, owned his mistake and moved on quickly.
"Quickly" is the operative word here, because the 2019-20 NHL season begins with training camps in about six weeks. If there's a bad time to be looking for a GM, well, this would be it. There are experienced candidates available, like former Flyers GM Ron Hextall, and we know that Blue Jackets senior VP of hockey operations/associate GM Bill Zito interviewed for the job last year.
But a new name has emerged: Blue Jackets assistant GM Basil McRae.
According to Mike Russo of The Athletic, the Wild have sought and received permission from the Blue Jackets to interview McRae, who was part of Columbus' series of hockey operations promotions earlier this summer. He was previously the club's director of player personnel for three years.
While McRae doesn't have direct connections to the Wild franchise, he does have a history with hockey in the state of Minnesota, having played for the North Stars in the late 1980s and early 1990s. He's also currently a part owner of the OHL's London Knights, a team he left as GM to join the Blue Jackets' hockey operations department in July 2016.