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Wilderness Walk: Shocker

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Prosser is having fun, the All-Star Game gets some new events, and Dustin Brown is terrible again

Los Angeles Kings v Minnesota Wild Photo by Bruce Kluckhohn/NHLI via Getty Images

This won’t come as a surprise to Minnesota Wild fans familiar with the Wild’s run to the 2013 playoffs, but Dustin Brown is in trouble for an illegal hit once again. Brown boarded Justin Schultz from behind in a hit remarkably similar to the one that incapacitated Jason Pominville right before the playoffs. What will be surprising is that Brown has only received a fine for this latest piece of dangerous play. Of course, maybe it shouldn’t be surprising as Brown only received a meaningless two game suspension back in 2013. Read Elliotte Friedman’s 31 Thoughts below for more about this latest misadventure of the Department of Player Safety.

Also mentioned in that article is a mention of midseason awards for the NHL. It includes a fan ballot, which can be found here: http://bit.ly/fanvotephwa. Go and make your voice heard. Maybe we can get some love for Nino Niederreiter or Jared Spurgeon (perhaps there should just be an award with their names on it for best players resurrected from the New York Islanders).

Wild News

Wild defenseman Prosser making the most of increased ice time - StarTribune.com
The defenseman has settled into a regular role on the third pairing rather than being in and out of the lineup, as he was during his previous stints.

Tending the Fields

2018 Draft rankings: Dahlin still the darling | The Hockey News
The Swedish defenseman hasn't been dethroned, but there is movement elsewhere. Check out our top 40 NHL draft prospects as the 2018 class moves into the second half.

Off the Trail

31 Thoughts: Canadiens GM Bergevin ready to be active by trade deadline - Sportsnet.ca
After three losses in a week to the Boston Bruins, Canadiens GM Marc Bergevin is trying to get something going on the trade market, though it would be surprising if he moved a few key players. That and more in the latest 31 Thoughts.

Down Goes Brown: 8 high-risk NHL trade targets - Sportsnet.ca
Many NHL GMs will be playing it safe this deadline. But the ones willing to play with fire will be looking at high-risk, high-reward opportunities. We found eight targets for them.

NHL Trade Rumors: Karlsson, Pageau, Pacioretty, More
Is the action heating up in the NHL? Is Erik Karlsson staying despite Dorion's comments about Gretzky being traded? What about the Canadiens and Max Pacioretty?

10 straight wins: Avalanche keep rolling as one of NHL's biggest surprise stories | The Hockey News
Coming off the worst season in the NHL's salary cap era, it’s not exactly an easy task putting a finger on what has made the Colorado Avalanche so good so fast.

NHL spices up all-star skills competition by adding new events to old favorites | The Hockey News
The NHL will shine the spotlight on the players' abilities with events, old and new, that focus on individual skills rather than team-based success.

The NHL‘s Cult of Non-Personality – Grandstand Central
A look at personality in today’s game, and why the NHL isn’t doing more to encourage it.

10 Best American Players in Hockey Today
Who are the top 10 active American-born players in the NHL today? We rank our favorites and make a case for why they belong on the list.

Hockey Family Tales: Kucherov's Mom & First Coach Tell Nikita Stories
In this translated interview, Nikita Kucherov's mother, Svetlana, and first coach, Gennadi Kurdin, shed some personal light on the Tampa Bay Lightning superstars childhood, family life and road to NHL All Star status.