CALGARY, AB -- After signing Zach Parise and Ryan Suter to monster deals prior to last season, the Minnesota Wild snuck into the playoffs as the eighth seed in the West.
Having the duo for a full year will only be beneficial to the Wild as they look to solidify themselves as a perennial playoff squad in the Central Division. The team will get help from sophomores Jonas Brodin, Mikael Granlund and Charlie Coyle.
So far, the Wild have been getting it done. Minnesota sits third in the Central Division with a 8-4-3 record.
Last Season: 26-19-3, 55 points (8th in West)
Notable Additions: RW Nino Niederreiter, D Keith Ballard, LW Matt Cooke, D Jonathon Blum
Notable Subtractions: D Brett Clark, RW Cal Clutterbuck, G Jeff Deslauriers, C Pierre-Marc Bouchard, C Matt Cullen, RW Devin Setoguchi, D Tom Gilbert
Flames Season Series Record: 0-0-0
No one in the National Hockey League has been hotter than Pominville, named the first star of the week on Monday after recording four goals and six points in his past three games. His point-scoring streak currently sits at four heading into Tuesday’s tilt against the Calgary Flames, with six goals and eight points during that span. He currently sits third overall in the NHL in goals with 10 on the season.
Despite averaging over 20 minutes a game -- most among centres for Minnesota -- Koivu hasn’t produced at a clip the Wild are used to seeing. The 30-year-old has just eight points in 15 games this year and hasn’t scored since October 17th. In the seven games he’s been held without a goal, Koivu has just two assists, too.
THREE PLAYERS TO WATCH
Parise, second on the Wild with six goals and points with 11, has been menacing for opposing goaltenders of late. The 29-year-old has points in five of his previous six games, including two goals and four assists. The Minneapolis, MN product also leads the team with 70 shots.
Second in average ice time behind only Ryan Suter, Brodin has followed up a successful rookie campaign in Minnesota that should’ve earned a Calder Trophy nomination. The 20-year-old has three goals and six points in 12 games this season. He did, however, miss three games in October with a broken cheekbone.
Though he’s third on the Wild in scoring, the 21-year-old Granlund has just one goal on the season -- coming Sunday against the New Jersey Devils. Still, the sophomore has 10 assists to compliment his lone goal, giving him 11 points in 15 games this season.