California native helped lead University of Denver to national championship

Las Vegas, Nev. – The Minnesota Wild selected defenseman Zeev Buium (pronounced Zee-v Boo-y-YUM) with the 12th overall selection in the first round of the 2024 Upper Deck NHL Draft Friday, June 28. Minnesota acquired the 12th pick from the Philadelphia Flyers in exchange for the 13th overall pick in this year’s draft and a third-round pick in the 2025 NHL Draft.

“Buium is a smooth skating, puck mover with championship pedigree,” said Judd Brackett, Minnesota Wild Director of Amateur Scouting. “We are very excited to add him to our organization.”

Buium, 18 (12/7/05), played his first season of collegiate hockey at the University of Denver last season, totaling 50 points (11-39=50), 20 penalty minutes (PIM), 41 blocked shots and a plus-34 rating in 42 games as the second-youngest player in college hockey. His 50-point season was the first by a freshman NCAA defenseman in over 20 years. He led the Pioneers in assists and plus/minus, ranked second in points and third in blocked shots. Buium was named National Collegiate Hockey Conference (NCHC) Rookie of the Year and the Best Offensive Defensemen, and was named to the NCHC All-Rookie Team, First All-Star Team and All-Tournament Team. He was also named to the USCHO First Team, NCAA First All-American Team and was a Hobey Baker Award Nominee. The left-shot blueliner helped lead the Pioneers to an NCHC championship and an NCAA Frozen Four National Championship, both played at Xcel Energy Center in Saint Paul, Minn.

The 6-foot, 185-pound native of Laguna Niguel, Calif., also won a gold medal with Team USA in the 2024 IIHF World Junior Championship, tallying five points (3-2=5) and tournament best plus-11 rating in seven games, including a goal in the gold-medal game. His goal total was the most by a defenseman in the tournament. He also won a gold medal with Team USA at the 2023 Under-18 IIHF World Junior Championship, recording six points (1-5=6) in seven games. Buium recorded 40 points (5-35=40) and 44 PIM in a total of 63 games with the United States National Team Development Program in 2022-23. He played for Shattuck St. Mary’s for two years (2019-21) before joining the United States National Team Development Program for the 2021-22 season.

Minnesota currently owns five selections in rounds 2-6 of the 2024 NHL Draft, which starts Saturday at 10 a.m. CT on NHL Network and ESPN+: #45 in the second round, #110 in the fourth round, #140 and #142 in the fifth round and #174 in the sixth round. Visit the Draft Central page on for the latest news on the 2024 NHL Draft.