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Wilderness Walk: Heartlanders’ Bennett named ECHL Rookie of the Year

Your daily dose of Wild news, along with other interesting stories from around the NHL.

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Minnesota Wild v Washington Capitals Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images

That’s Wild

  • In non-NHL news, Kris Bennett, the captain of the Minnesota Wild’s ECHL affiliate Iowa Heartlanders, has been named the league’s Rookie of the Year. The 26-year-old spent three years playing for the University of New Brunswick up in Canada before a short stint in the AHL last year. Now, he’s flourishing in the ECHL and is clearly appreciative.

“For me it was about trying to improve every single day,” Bennett said. “I was fortunate to have great linemates and coaches and teammates that believed in me, instilled confidence in me and allowed me to get better. It was a great year and I’m super proud of myself and the teammates and coaches that made this a special year.”

Bennett led the ECHL in goals scored with 35 and earned 78 total points this season.

  • In honor of Kirill Kaprizov breaking the Wild’s record for most goals scored in a single season, we went ahead and gathered up all 43 of his goals in one single blog post for you to enjoy. [Hockey Wilderness]
  • Dmitry Kulikov is stepping up in Matt Dumba’s absence. [10K Rinks]
  • Ahead of tonight’s game against the Montreal Canadiens, the Wild will be without Marcus Foligno, as he has entered the NHL’s COVID protocol. In turn, Minnesota recalled Mitchell Chaffee. [Hockey Wilderness]

Off the trail...

  • In hindsight, the Seattle Kraken expansion draft makes just as little sense as the day it happened. So why not look at who they should have taken from each team that day. [The Athletic]
  • The Florida Panthers are running on a 10-game winning streak. [TSN]