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Wilderness Walk 4-15-2013: Game Day Edition

The Minnesota Wild find themselves in the frozen north to take on the Calgary Flames tonight at 8pm.

Minnesota Wild take on the Calgary Flames tonight, puck drops at 8pm.
Minnesota Wild take on the Calgary Flames tonight, puck drops at 8pm.
Derek Leung

Today, we mark another sad day in Minnesota hockey history. On this day, 20 years ago the Minnesota North Stars played their final game as the North Stars, a 5 - 3 loss against the Detroit Red Wings. The only physical evidence we have left here in Minnesota to remind us of the North is the East sign in the parking lot of the demolished Met Center just North of the Mall of America. My mother used to work at the old Met Center and I recall her telling stories of former staff breaking into the abandon building prior to it's demolishment, and placing pictures of Norm Green in the urinals.

My absolute favorite memory of our old team comes from a game early in the '91-'92 campaign. The Minnesota Twins were in the midst of winning their 2nd World Series and my father took my little sister and me to a game against the Boston Bruins. We were sitting against the glass, behind the goal the North Stars shot at twice. In the middle of the game, a few drunk rowdy (and apparently Atlanta Braves fans) started the tomahawk chop. This did not sit well with the fan base here in Minnesota. The Met Center erupted in a "Braves Suck!" chant which is probably about as loud as I have ever heard an arena get. Not sure what my dad thought about some of the other unsavory things that could be heard floating around the arena with 2 of his children aged 10 and 6 present, but even then I knew this was a memory that would stick with me for life.

I love hockey, and I loved the North Stars. I may have mentioned before how I used to watch games from home with a hockey stick in one hand and my baseball glove in the other making all the great saves along with the likes of Don Beaupre, Jon Casey and Kari Takko (one of the coolest names in hockey IMHO).

An entire generation of Minnesotan's have grown up now, not having ever seen a North Stars game. Not knowing what the old Norris Division rivalries were all about. The situation of moving a hockey team has been in the news here lately again, as the Houston Aeros have played their last game in Houston and seem poised to move North. It opens old wounds for some of us (even if I think our affiliate should be closer to home, I've never been a fan of moving a team). FUCK NORM GREEN!!!

In other news, your Minnesota Wild play a game tonight against the Calgary Flames. We need a win desperately, and tonight I'll take it in regulation or otherwise. News feels a little light today, but lets get into to it anyway.

Wild News

Anisimov out indefinitely after Coyle hit last night | ProHockeyTalk
Definitely a shame it sounds like Anisimov will miss some games for the BJ's. Wish the guy a speedy recovery.

For Minnesota Wild's Charlie Coyle, no additional penalty -
DoPSJ shows a little consistency this time around, look for them to shake things up a bit with the next one though, well overdue for some stupidity.

Wild's Cullen improving, could return vs. Calgary |
Hopefully he does return and gives the Wild the shot in the arm they so desperately need.

The end of the North Stars (20th anniversary edition) |
"If I were to drop dead tomorrow,’’ North Stars announcer Al Shaver said at the time, "it would be from a broken heart."

The Team of 18,001: Long Gone, But Not Forgotten
Remembering a sad day 20 years ago ...

Tending The Fields

Off day, but you just know something will come up as soon as this posts...

Off The Trail

Taylor Hall is unhappy after Oilers’ latest letdown | ProHockeyTalk
If I have learned anything from being a father, it's that babies cry.

Devils resorting to changing superstitions to break losing streak | ProHockeyTalk
Whenever your feeling down about the Wild, simply look to the east ...

NHL Death Watch: Panthers eliminated; Stars jump Wings into eighth seed | Puck Daddy - Yahoo! Sports
It's my favorite time of year, watching as teams slowly start booking their tee times.