William Brent Burns (born March 9, 1985) is a Canadian professional ice hockey defenceman currently playing for the Minnesota Wild of the National Hockey League (NHL).
Burns was drafted by the Minnesota Wild in the first round, 20th overall, in the 2003 NHL Entry Draft. Burns spent most of his minor hockey career playing for the Barrie Icemen and Ajax Knights of the OMHA. He spent two years playing in the Metropolitan Toronto Hockey league (MTHL) now called the Greater Toronto Hockey League (GTHL) for the North York Canadiens, along with fellow NHL draftees Anthony Stewart and Geoff Platt. Burns then played his OHL career as a right wing with the Brampton Battalion in the 2002-03 season. He led the team in playoff scoring that season with five goals and six assists in 11 games. Burns was runner-up for Most Improved Player in the OHL as voted on by the leagues coaches.
Upon turning professional with the Wild in 2003, Burns was converted to defense by defensively minded coach Jacques Lemaire. Burns played in 36 games with Minnesota in the 2003-04 season, showing flashes of natural ability in rushing from the blueline. After spending the 2004 NHL Lockout in the AHL with the Houston Aeros, Burns adapted as defenseman and earned a regular spot on the Wild team in the 2005-06 season, contributing 16 points in 72 games.