Now that the Thomas Vanek signing has had a week to sink in, it’s time to discuss our expectations for Vanek’s first season with the Wild. Hopefully people have come down from the free agency high and are beginning to think clearly on the subject.
Vanek has always been a somewhat streaky offensive player. He can at times completely disappear from the game. Having watched many Sabres games in the past 5 years, I can tell you that he usually requires another player to do most of the work/create the offensive chance/drive play and then set him up. Derek Roy used to set him up all the time back in the day, but never seemed to get any credit.
The nice thing about Vanek’s game besides his scoring touch, is that he seems to have great positioning offensively. The guy always seems to be in the right place at the right time.
I’m expecting Vanek’s numbers at the end of the season to be around 26 goals, 65 points. With plenty of that coming on the power play. Anything above 65 points would be gravy.
Also, hopefully Vanek is one of the rare few players that has chemistry with Koivu. Because I don’t want to see the Parise - Granlund - Pomminville line broken up.
What I’m trying to say is the following: ....We shouldn’t go out and start planning the parade down Nicollet Mall just yet.
The NHL season is a long and grueling 82 games. Our Minnesota Wild will be playing in the most difficult division in hockey. Every team in the Central besides "the Wall" looks to have improved from last season.
It’s no guarantee that we make the playoffs in the West, much less do well once we get there. Lets take this thing one game at a time. And hope for the best! Can't wait for October!
On to your Walk
MN Wild News
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