ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) -The Minnesota Wild relinquished their rights to 2004 first-round pick A.J. Thelen on Friday after failing to sign him.
The Wild chose the 6-foot-3 defenseman from Savage with the 12th overall pick in the 2004 draft. He was coming off a stellar freshman season at Michigan State, where he was a second-team All-American.
But Thelen ran into trouble at the school and was kicked off the hockey team after being caught drinking underage.
He spent the next two years in Canada's Western Hockey League, where he helped the Vancouver Giants win the Memorial Cup.
The Wild had until Friday to sign him to a deal or forfeit his rights. The Wild will receive the 42nd overall pick in July's draft as compensation.
The Wild also failed to get deals done with two 2005 draft picks - third-round goaltender Kristofer Westblom and fourth-round center Kyle Bailey.

Top NHL Public Bets

NHL Top Stories

Thumbnail Updated Stanley Cup Odds The NHL Preseason is set to begin in about a month. Here is a look at the latest odds to win the Stanley Cup in 2017.
Thumbnail Datsyuk leaves, Mrazek stays in Detroit After three-time Selke Trophy winner Pavel Datsyuk officially decided to return to Russia, Detroit fans needed a...
Thumbnail Stamkos staying with Tampa The biggest prize in NHL free agency has elected to stay home, as Steven Stamkoshas signed a new deal with the Tampa Bay...
Thumbnail Stanley Cup Game 6 Pick The San Jose Sharks hope to force a Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final when they host the Pittsburgh Penguins tonight...
Thumbnail Stanley Cup Final Game 5 Pick Will the Pittsburgh Penguins close out the Stanley Cup Final tonight when they host the San Jose Sharks in...
More inNHL Articles  

NHL Team Pages