This is the kind of game we've been waiting for.
A game where the Wild didn't play down to their competition. A game where all of the Wild's stars came alive. A game where the Wild scored 5 goals. A game where the Wild controlled an entire game. And, oh yeah, the game where Jonas Brodin scored his first NHL goal.
So, what does this pretty decent win mean? For starters, the Wild, as you'll see in Playoff Bubble Today (or, Regurgitating the Standings), have gained a couple of positions in the standings, and no matter the results on Friday, will not be pushed out of the playoff bubble by the time the Wild faces off in against Denver in the second half of the home-and-home.
We actually have a pretty busy day today. We got recaps out the wazoo, we get to say goodbye to yet another AHLer and his contract, we get an update on Jason Zucker, we hear about realignment, examine how the Corey Perry suspension can hurt the Wild, and take a long look at the next wave of young players that could influence the Wild. And that's before we go Off the Trail.
So, let's get on with it. On to the Walk.
Playoff Bubble Today
The Wild are currently sitting in 6th place in the Conference with 30 points. They are two points behind the Division-Leading Vancouver Canucks, as well as St. Louis for 4th in the Conference.
St. Louis (32 points) vanquished Phoenix (29) in regulation 3-0.
Anaheim defeated Dallas (27 points) in the shootout 2-1.
Vancouver (32) stomped Nashville (28) in regulation by a score of 7-4.
San Jose (30), with the help of Brent Burns, defeated Los Angeles (30) in regulation by a score of 4-3.
Other Wild Stuff
Wild welcomes regional rivals in NHL's realignment | StarTribune.com- As do Wild fans. This realignment thing is pretty decent. This notebook also discusses Zucker's status, Chay Genoway's trade, and next year's Hockey Day. Also, there's a blog that covers much of the same territory, with a lot more content.
Suter, Parise leading Wild back to relevancy - Sportsnet.ca- I'll say they are. Especially tonight.
Three Periods: Ryan Suter rises in Minnesota; teenage phenom Jonas Brodin; Teemu Selanne's toughest season - Yahoo! Sports- Here's some Brodin man-love. Also, funny how we don't hear about Ryan Suter being overrated anymore. Also, there's a joke about Bane somewhere in this title.
How Corey Perry's suspension could hurt the Minnesota Wild - The Hockey News- Well, that's great. On the other hand, though, having the aggrieved team decide when a player sits just seems kinda weak to me.
Tending the Fields
Brian Connelly powers Aeros past Heat | Hockey Stop | a Chron.com blog- Phillips with a goal, Larsson with an assist.
The Third Intermission: Wild trades Genoway to Capitals organization- TTI breaks down the Chay Genoway trade.
First Round Bust: Chay Genoway Traded: A Ripple in The NHL Landscape- It's all about the contracts.
2013 NHL mock draft - Seth Jones tops first projection - ESPN- Insider article, but to you non-Insiders, the Wild are projected to pick 6'2'' Swedish Defenseman Robert Hagg, who apparently is comparable to Jonas Brodin. I'd take that.
Laganiere, DeKeyser among ten NCAA free agents that could be NHL-bound - Hockey's Future- Read up on the guys that the Wild will be talking about signing after the college season including OHMYGODA6'8"DMANWITHSKILL.
Off the Trail
NHL realignment, she is official | Backhand Shelf | Blogs | theScore.com- I think realignment is SOOOO GOOD!
Gary Bettman: New NHL divisions will have ‘sensible geographic designations’ for names | Puck Daddy - Yahoo! Sports- Perhaps the new divisions should be named after the reasons we hate Gary Bettman? Wouldn't it be great to see the "Taking Away The Cool Division Names", "Unnecessary Expansion/Relocation", "Three Lockouts", and "Weasel Face" Divisions? Seems sensible to us, no?
Pass or Fail: Separate NHL Awards for Eastern, Western Conferences for 2013 | Puck Daddy - Yahoo! Sports- Brodin gets some love in here, but he's not the most important thing here. I like this idea, at least for this year. It really doesn't make sense to compare players across Conferences when they never face common opponents.
Short suspensions won't remove headshots from NHL game - NHL - Stu Hackel - SI.com- A call to crack down further on suspensions, especially to star players.
Measuring Sidney Crosby’s season-to-date against the greatest of all-time | Backhand Shelf- An attempt to put Sid Crosby's season in historical context.
Here’s what Seattle’s arena will look like for an NHL franchise (PHOTOS) | Puck Daddy - Yahoo! Sports- This looks cool, but who's playing there?