Happy Friyay Wilderness!
The the Wild are back in action tonight as they are on the road in one of the toughest buildings to play in, T-Mobile Arena in Vegas. The Vegas Golden Knights are 23-10-5 at home, but the Minnesota Wild are tied for second in the Western conference with 20 wins on the road. The game is almost a must win for the Wild as it looks like they will have win out if they want a shot at the final wild card spot.
The Wild (79 points) are currently chasing down the Colorado Avalanche (83 points) and the Arizona Coyotes (81 points) for the final playoff spot. As it happens the two teams in front of Minnesota are squaring off tonight in Denver at the Pepsi Center. If the Coyotes can get a win in regulation, and the Wild beat Vegas, it should set up for an interesting Sunday when the Wild are in the desert to play Arizona. This weekend could be a make-or-break weekend for the Minnesota Wild.
Friyay Fun Fact: Eric Staal’s favorite cheat meal is Chinese food.
Taking us through today’s Walk is Viva Las Vegas by Elvis Presley.
Wild Warmup: Minnesota at Vegas
The Wild opens a brief two-game road trip against the Vegas Golden Knights on Friday at T-Mobile Arena. But just because the trip is short doesn't mean it isn't uber-important.
What could the Wild have changed about that costly 2017 expansion draft? – The Athletic
As the Wild prepare to face Vegas, we look back at the expansion draft that seems especially costly with the increasing luxury of hindsight.
Hunt taking advantage of opportunity with Wild ahead of Vegas return
Much has changed for Wild defenseman Brad Hunt both on and off the ice as he prepares to take on his former teammates Friday night at T-Mobile Arena.
Wild-Vegas game preview - StarTribune.com
It's another must-win game for the Wild, which has had plenty of success against last year's Western Conference champions.
Parise update, Hunt on Vegas | NHL.com
Bruce Boudreau updates the media on the status of Zach Parise, and Brad Hunt talks about returning to Vegas as a visitor this week
Wild defenseman Brad Hunt enjoying new son, new team - StarTribune.com
The Bemidji State product barely played this season with the Golden Knights, whom the Wild visits on Friday night.
On Frozen Pond
Gophers defenseman Jack Sadek signs ATO with Iowa Wild - StarTribune.com
Sadek, a Wild draft choice in 2015, played four seasons at the University of Minnesota.
College Hockey’s Depth Is Reflected in Men’s Tournament Field - The New York Times
Arizona State and American International College are in, while traditional powers like Boston College and North Dakota are out, when the tournament begins Friday.
Frozen Four Preview: the lowdown on all 16 teams - TheHockeyNews
The road to Buffalo starts this weekend with regionals and we've got you covered: insider scouting reports from rival coaches, NHL prospects to watch and more in our comprehensive round-up.
NCAA hockey tournament to feature plenty of NHL prospects
NHL prospects will dot the rosters when the NCAA Division I men's hockey tournament begins Friday, with 16 teams divided into four regional brackets.
Off the Trail
Insider Trading: How secure is Housley's future in Buffalo? - TSN.ca
A potential Bruce Boudreau replacement (if fired, which in my opinion would be stupid) possibly on his way out in Buffalo?
Bowers, acquired in Duchene trade, to sign with Avs - TSN.ca
The Colorado Avalanche could potentially have two first-round picks acquired from the Ottawa Senators in their lineup next season. According to TSN Hockey Insider Bob McKenzie, Shane Bowers, who was acquired in the Nov. 2017 Matt Duchene trade, has elected to forego his junior season at Boston University and sign with the Avalanche.
Strange But True Stats: NHL numbers for the curious fan - TheHockeyNews
We had to dig a little deeper to find these 10 player stats and 10 team stats that are both unconventional and illuminating.
NHL Masterton Trophy nominees: Who has been selected from each team? - TheHockeyNews
The Islanders' Robin Lehner was a no-brainer to be selected as a Masterton Trophy nominee, and he is joined by the likes of the Ducks' Patrick Eaves, Oilers' Andrej Sekera and Senators' Jean-Gabriel Pageau. Find the full list and each nominees case for the hardware here.
Masterton Trophy nominations announced
The Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy is awarded annually by the Professional Hockey Writers' Association to the player who best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to ice hockey.
Super 16: Penguins surge in rankings
The Pittsburgh Penguins were the big upward movers in the Super 16 this week, climbing five spots to No. 6 after going 3-0-1 on a four-game road trip that ended Monday. That surge comes one week after they fell four spots in the power rankings.
Hurricanes to end Storm Surge celebration
The Storm Surge is leaving Carolina. The celebrations that have become noteworthy after each Carolina Hurricanes home win at PNC Arena will end after their game against the Washington Capitals on Thursday
Blue Jackets top Canadiens, tie them for second wild card
COLUMBUS -- The Columbus Blue Jackets tied the Montreal Canadiens for the second wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Eastern Conference by defeating them 6-2 at Nationwide Arena on Thursday.
NHL Rumors: Anders Lee, Shane Bowers, Sabres, Flyers, More
In today's NHL rumors there are updates on Anders Lee, Shane Bowers, Cam Talbot and the Buffalo Sabres decision on a coach and manager.
Change to concussion subcommittee the latest signal in evolving ideas about head injuries – The Athletic
Change is afoot with the NHL and NHLPA's joint governing body on concussions. Katie Strang breaks down why this is a step forward.
Examining the importance of the baseline test in the NHL’s concussion protocol – The Athletic
How the baseline cognitive test in the league's concussion protocol impacts clearance to play.
What will the next great hockey movie be like? – The Athletic
“It’s an interesting fucking question," said Jay Baruchel; “To do another classic hockey movie would be tough," said Slap Shot's Carlson.
Pastrnak's return from injury further cements Bruins' top line as the scariest in hockey - TheHockeyNews
David Pastrnak's stellar return from a thumb injury has revived Boston's dangerous first line, and the trio should strike fear into the hearts of opponents.
Why Ben Bishop’s injury isn’t necessarily disastrous for the Dallas Stars - TheHockeyNews
The Stars have lost Ben Bishop, a Vezina Trophy frontrunner, to a non-contact lower-body injury little more than one week before the playoffs and he's listed as day-to-day. Dallas shouldn't panic, though, because Anton Khudobin has shown he's capable of carrying the load.
Bobrovsky's hot streak is keeping Blue Jackets in the battle for playoff spot - TheHockeyNews
Sergei Bobrovsky has been Columbus' MVP in recent weeks, but he'll need a bit of help from his team's offense if the Blue Jackets are going to reach the post-season.
Are there any ‘scary’ teams left in the NHL? - Video - TSN
The boys are joined by Ray Ferraro to debate if there are any ‘scary’ teams in the league anymore, Ray & O-Dog reminisce about the scary teams they played against
NHL Power Rankings: 31 Lousy Dad Jokes Edition - Sportsnet.ca
In this week's NHL Power Rankings, punny trumps funny as we uncover a classic dad joke for each of the league's 31 teams.