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Wilderness Walk: The Return of the King??? Edition

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Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning Wilderness. The Wild got a much needed win last night. It was needed more for Darcy Kuemper. He really played a solid game stopping 34 of 35 shots. Minnesota played more conservative rather than the dominant puck-possession style from early in the season. Maybe they did that to help protect their young netminder. Maybe? I mean, a game to focus on the structure of the defense isn't as long as they can get back to the team they were offensively in the first 15 games, am I right?

At least you don't have to wait to see the Wild back in action as they celebrated the win last night and immediately jumped a plane to Dallas. Did you know the Interstate-35 that runs between the Twin Cities and Dallas/Ft. Worth splits only twice? Yeah, I-35W and I-35E that runs through the heart of Minneapolis ans St. Paul respectively, splits into I-35W and I-35E in Dallas/Ft. Worth. Not that you needed that completely trivial and pointless information, but there you go. I'm here to inform and enlighten.

Minnesota is 3-0 against the Stars this season and Kuemper has backstopped each of those games, but we'll likely see Backstrom in net.

The Wilderness Walk music selection for today comes from Cake. Mmmmm Cake.

Wild News

Minnesota Wild: Jason Zucker feeling better but doesn't play - TwinCities.com

Wild tops Toronto, finally returns to winning ways at home | Star Tribune
Maybe the X-Mas break was the best thing to happen for Darcy? Maybe?

Minnesota Wild finally score clutch goals, beat Maple Leafs - TwinCities.com

Wild: Erik Haula's struggles start with conditioning, coach says - TwinCities.com

What can the Minnesota Wild do about their goaltending problem? - CBSSports.com

GameDay: Minnesota Wild at Dallas Stars | The Star Telegram

Tending the Fields

World Juniors: Team Canada dominates Denmark, advances to semifinal | ProHockeyTalk
And then there were four...

Analyzing Alex Tuch's World Junior Championships
Our friends at GPW look at the way Alex Tuch, Minnesota's 2014 first round selection, performed in the most recent World Junior Classic.

United States eliminated by Russia in world junior quarters - ESPN
The US did not win the WJC and were ousted by Russia.

World Juniors: Team Canada dominates Denmark, advances to semifinal | ProHockeyTalk

Off the Trail

Edmonton Oilers trade David Perron to Pittsburgh Penguins for Rob Klinkhammer, first-round draft pick - ESPN

WATCH: Penguins, Lightning game delayed after referee throws up on ice - CBSSports.com
Friday's game between the Pittsburgh Penguins and Tampa Bay Lightning had to be delayed for a few minutes.

2015 NHL Winter Classic posts lowest TV ratings in event's history - CBSSports.com
Has the WC run its course???

NHL Recap - Montreal Canadiens at New Jersey Devils - Jan 02, 2015 - CBSSports.com
The wins keep coming for Carey Price and the Montreal Canadiens.

‘He’s not hungry': Patrick Roy rips backup goalie Berra | ProHockeyTalk
Thus the reason Pickard has been playing over Berra.