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Wilderness Walk: US 2, Ghana 1 Edition

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The US Men's National Team gave up a goal in the 83rd minute to Ghana to tie in their World Cup 2014 opening game. And then, as if on the wings of angels, John Brooks, a player who was not supposed to be on the squad, headed a corner kick into the net. Not 2 minutes later, he saved another Ghanan goal off of a Ghanan corner kick.

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Laurence Griffiths

For anyone unaware (difficult, considering the multiple Google doodles, intense coverage, and general ballyhoo), the World Cup has begun, and the United States defeated Ghana, a team that has knocked them out of the WC tournament twice in the last 8 years. The USMNT's next match will be on Sunday at 5 PM, against Cristiano Ronaldo's Portugal. With 3 points coming into the game, what can they do, 6 days from now? Watch and find out!

The last pieces of news regarding the World Cup: Jozy Altidore, the US Striker (goal-scorer) retained a hamstring injury; we don't know anything about that yet. Clint Dempsey, another striker and the US captain was kicked in the face, but played the rest of the game. Matt Besler, a US defender, appeared to be injured also, and was replaced. There is no further news on that either.

On to the hockey.

Hockey is over for now, but that does not mean the news is slowing down. There's plenty here to mull over, so grab a listen to this (possibly new) experience, and enjoy the Walk.

Wild News

2014 Top Plays Tournament - Semifinals | Minnesota Wild
Vote in the Semifinals of the Wild's "Top Plays Tournament"

On Tap (Draft News)

Scouting Report: Jake Virtanen, LW, Calgary (WHL) | theScore
A big winger with a blistering shot.

2014 NHL Draft Prospect: CJ Franklin | SB Nation College Hockey
A closer look at the NHL Draft prospects of Minnesota State recruit CJ Franklin

2014 NHL Draft Prospect: Miguel Fidler | SB Nation College Hockey
A closer look at the NHL Draft prospects of Ohio State recruit Miguel Fidler. HE IS ONE OF US.

Here’s the official 2014 NHL Entry Draft order | ProHockeyTalk
No worries, the Wild still pick at 18, but the Ducks and Lightning both hold a pair of first-round selections.

Off the Trail

The Kings Are the Not-Supposed-To Stanley Cup Champs | Grantland.com
One of the best "wrap-up" pieces out there. Read this. Seriously. do it.

Calendar full as NHL enters offseason | NHL.com
A great breakdown of what happens during the offseason- regardless of team. Draft, buyouts, the whole schedule is here.

Here’s the official 2014 NHL Entry Draft order | ProHockeyTalk
No worries, the Wild still pick at 18, but the Ducks and Lightning both hold a pair of first-round selections.

Eulogy: Remembering the 2013-14 New York Rangers | Puck Daddy - Yahoo Sports
Not a bad eulogy. Not a GREAT eulogy, but not bad.

Shawn Thornton, beloved enforcer, won’t be re-signed by Boston Bruins | Puck Daddy - Yahoo Sports
From Yahoo Sports: There aren’t many nine-minutes-a-night forwards in the NHL whose departure from their team is significant news. But such is the relationship between Shawn Thornton, who’ll drag his knuckles to another team this summer, and the Boston Bruins.

McKenzie: Hurricanes deem Cam Ward 'expendable' | theScore
Another potential net minder for the Wild to grab?

Report: Avalanche, Stastny haven't negotiated since club made a contract offer weeks ago | theScore
One of the fan favorites to be signed by Minnesota... would he? Could he?

Will Milan Michalek Leave the Ottawa Senators as a Free Agent? |
Will Michalek remain a Senator? Or could the Wild make an acquisition? Would YOU want them to?

Which LA Kings Players Will be Left Off the Stanley Cup? | The Hockey Writers
An interesting fluff piece regarding rules for having your name on The Cup.

Oilers GM MacTavish: ‘It’s a good year to be a UFA’ | ProHockeyTalk
Because the Oiler's are the best franchise around.

UFA of the Day: Ales Hemsky | ProHockeyTalk
30-year-old winger won't be staying in Ottawa. Could he be a piece of the puzzle for the Wild?

In a young man’s game, let’s take it easy with the dynasty talk | ProHockeyTalk
It's the offseason, let's talk about anything!

‘Hawks say good-bye to Handzus; who will play 2C? | ProHockeyTalk
Will the Wild add Handzus? (Hopefully not!)

AV: 2014 Rangers were closer than 2011 Canucks | ProHockeyTalk
Both teams lost, and the Canucks had a chance to clinch... but Rangers went to OT thrice. Who was closer? Who cares?

Shoalts: The gap between the NHL’s haves and have-nots remains wide | The Globe and Mail
Some interesting numbers regarding team revenues.