So much so that I'm gonna trash talk my friend Dan, who among his many flaws is an Avalanche fan.
So here it goes, Dan. Dan, your favorite team stinks. Yeah! I said it! PDO and stuff! In your face! MacKinnon and other Avs suck!
My more serious thoughts after we start the Walk.
Parise's presence being felt for Wild | Star Tribune- This was especially apparent on Tuesday, when the Wild played perhaps their best game in two months. The power play had some chances and everything!
Minnesota Wild back in hunt with 9-3-1 record in January - TwinCities.com- The Wild did this mostly without Mikko Koivu, Jared Spurgeon, Josh Harding, and Zach Parise. There's got to have been some luck involved with that, but credit to the Wild for pulling it off. They're poised to solidify a playoff spot when those guys come back.
Chatting with Ryan Suter and Bob Suter about Sochi, U.S. Olympic gold and positivity (Puck Daddy) | Puck Daddy - Yahoo Sports- Ryan Suter carries on his family's Olympic tradition.
Next up: Avalanche; Team USA captain named Friday | Russo's Rants | StarTribune.com- Zach Parise will be in strong contention for the captaincy. Ryan Suter has a shot as well, but my money would be on Parise.
Wednesday (Genuine optimism about the Wild) edition: Wha' Happened? | RandBall | StarTribune.com- A month after certain bloggers on certain sites made certain articles about perhaps needing to fire a certain head coach, the Wild are in the driver's seat to a playoff spot.
Charley Walters: Minnesota Wild's Darcy Kuemper excelling at the little things - TwinCities.com- I'm assuming that "little things" aren't "stopping goals", and "winning". And if that's the case, he's doing the big things, too.
The Team of 18,001: Getting To The Net- Giles notices that the Wild are attacking the net as of late much more than we're accustomed to seeing.
Hitting The Post: The Great Goalie Gambit- Nick takes a look at the goaltending quandary.
Off the Trail
NHL looking at four outdoor games in 2014-15; Coors pushing for Denver (Report) | Puck Daddy - Yahoo Sports- The Wild will probably not get one of those, while the Winnipeg Jets will probably host one in Atlanta.
Arizona Coyotes new official name for Phoenix, starting in 2014-15 | Puck Daddy - Yahoo Sports- "You forced me to call them 'Arizona'. I loathe Arizona."- Adelle DeWitt, Phoenix Coyotes Minority Owner, speaking to the Glendale City Council.
NHL official Wes McCauley mic’d up at Yankee Stadium: 5 lessons we learned (Video) | Puck Daddy - Yahoo Sports- Learning things from wire-tapped refs.
NHL -- John Buccigross offers up his latest Twitter Bag - ESPN- Get ready for a bag skate.
NHL -- Tampa Bay Lightning Tyler Johnson standing tall in rookie race - ESPN- Tyler Johnson's breaking out this season. His 34 points would currently rank 3rd on the Wild, behind Jason Pominville (37) and Mikko Koivu (35).
Behind Enemy Lines
Colorado Avalanche Nathan MacKinnon first NHL season is going well, here's an update on how he feels. - Mile High Hockey- Taking the pulse of MHH as to whether they're pleased with MacKinnon's selection over, say, Seth Jones.
Colorado Avalanche may be getting a push into the Stadium series by Coors Light - Mile High Hockey- Colorado has the Coors Light lobby going for them. I assume the pressure Coors is putting on the NHL is that they will force Gary Bettman to actually drink their beer should Colorado be denied an outdoor game. I am rooting for that outcome.
Avs’ Duchene trying to not get bummed out about goal drought | ProHockeyTalk- He should be comforted by the fact that his team appears to be a lock for a playoff spot.
Gameday preview: Wild at Colorado | Star Tribune- Get prepped for tonight's game. See you all at 8!