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Niederreiter helping change expectations of Swiss hockey

Silver medal at recent World Championships indicative of rising

by Aaron Vickers / Special to Wild.com

COPENHAGEN, Denmark -- Nino Niederreiter is helping shape the expectation of success in Switzerland. And he's seen, the Minnesota Wild forward suggests, his home country setting satisfaction at a higher level.

"Absolutely," said Niederreiter, who helped push his country into an improbable gold-medal meeting with Sweden at the 2018 IIHF World Championship, but fell by the slimmest of margins in a shootout to claim silver.

"At the end of the day, our main goal is always to be in the top eight, for sure, and then move on from there. Reaching the quarterfinal has to be a goal, year-in and year-out. The last two years, we've done that. It's a stepping stone. We're trying to improve year-in, year-out. Once you get to that quarterfinal, anything is possible.

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Out of the Shadows: Granlund, Niederreiter, Wild yearn for new heights

Forwards emerging as future leaders during current Minnesota playoff push

by Dan Myers @DanMyers / Wild.com

This article appears in the March/April issue of Wild Magazine.

Youth is no longer an excuse for the Minnesota Wild.

Not after five consecutive playoff appearances. Not with its veteran core another year older. And certainly not with its "second wave" of talent becoming veterans themselves.

Players like Nino Niederreiter and Mikael Granlund are just entering their primes. And despite an early season of frustrating injuries for both, the Wild's hopes for a deep playoff run could depend in large part on the two taking the next steps in their careers.

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Growing disabled hockey a family affair for Wild's Darby Hendrickson

Hendrickson Foundation's second annual festival takes place in Blaine this weekend

by Kayleigh Jackson / Wild.com

Seven years ago, hockey across the United States, especially in Minnesota, was flourishing. At least, it was for some people. 

Even with organizations like the Minnesota Sled Hockey Association and Minnesota Special Hockey already established, there wasn't always a high level of awareness regarding athletes who couldn't participate in standing or competitive hockey. 

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Fighting Back: Parise's road to recovery

Winger's journey back to ice hasn't been easy, but he's hopeful a return to form isn't far behind

by Dan Myers @DanMyers / Wild.com

This article appears in the February issue of Wild Magazine.

It was just a normal, routine offseason for Wild forward Zach Parise.

The 2016-17 season was a frustrating one for Minnesota's alternate captain. A variety of illnesses -- including a couple of bouts with strep throat and a battle with the mumps -- combined with a lower-body injury early in the season limited Parise to just 69 games.

But a strong offseason program had the 33-year-old primed for a bounce back season. With no World Cup of Hockey changing his summer routine and no Winter Olympics interrupting the NHL season, Parise was looking forward to the 82-game grind of the regular season.

Suddenly, a guy who was one of the finest athletes in the world, a man at the peak of his profession, could not even sit in a chair to eat.

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2017-18 season preview: Goaltenders

Wild hopeful Stalock can provide quality minutes behind Dubnyk

by Dan Myers @1DanMyers / Wild.com

This story is part of Wild.com's 2017-18 season preview.

Wild goaltender Devan Dubnyk is coming off arguably the best season of his NHL career. It's easy to forget, considering how things went over the final month of the regular season and Minnesota's early exit from the postseason.

Dubnyk returns after putting himself in the mix for the Vezina Trophy (NHL's best goaltender) until the month of March, when he simply ran out of steam. With Darcy Kuemper struggling for most of the season and Boudreau unable to trust his backup enough to give Dubnyk a breather, the belief is that Dubnyk simply wore down by season's end.

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2017-18 season preview: Defensemen

Suter leads group full of competition following Scandella trade during summer

by Dan Myers @1DanMyers / Wild.com

This story is part of Wild.com's 2017-18 season preview.

The more things change, the more things stay the same.

The 2016-17 season was just another year for Ryan Suter, who was again among the NHL's leaders in time on ice, averaging just shy of 27 minutes per contest.

Suter established a new career high with nine goals last season and also chipped in 31 assists, reaching 40 points for the third time in four full seasons with Minnesota. His plus-34 was tied with teammate Jason Zucker for the best mark in the League and a Wild franchise record. 

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2017-18 season preview: Forwards

Additions of Foligno, Ennis, Cullen make Wild deeper team up front

by Dan Myers @1DanMyers / Wild.com

This story is part of Wild.com's 2017-18 season preview.

As the Minnesota Wild gets ready to drop the puck on the 2017-18 regular season, there will be plenty of familiar faces in place on the roster.

The NHL's second-best offense from a year ago, and most explosive in the Western Conference by a wide margin, Minnesota returns more than 78 percent of its 263 goals from a year ago, including each of its top seven goal scorers.

The Wild has even added to its core, making its forward group one of the NHL's deepest.

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This Is 'Their' Ice: Each Wild player's childhood rink(s)

Minnesota players reminisce about the sheets they first called home

by Phil Ervin / Wild.com

This story is part of Wild.com's 2017-18 season preview.

Each Wild player has at least one childhood rink with which he identifies. And with each sheet comes a story. Here, Minnesota's players wax nostalgic about their ice of yesteryear.
 

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TRIA Rink to provide Wild, St. Paul unprecedented options

State-of-the-art practice facility means fewer logistical headaches, more community ice time

by Kayleigh Jackson / Wild.com

This story is part of Wild.com's 2017-18 season preview.

ST. PAUL -- Xcel Energy Center is home to more than 150 events each year, including every Minnesota Wild home game from the preseason through the end of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. As a premier facility right in the middle of downtown, "The X," as it's affectionately known by fans, is a highly sought-after venue for athletics and performers.

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Meet Travis Larson, the Minnesota Wild's ice man

Ice operations manager has been with franchise since the beginning

by Kayleigh Jackson / Wild.com

This story is part of Wild.com's 2017-18 season preview.

ST. PAUL -- The Xcel Energy Center has been home to the Minnesota Wild for 17 years. Travis Larson, ice operations manager and event manager, has been here every step of the way -- and then some.

Larson's ties to Minnesota hockey date back through the North Stars' tenure at the Met Center, where he took a part-time job in 1990. Since then, both the game of hockey and the accepted standards for NHL-grade ice rinks have changed drastically. 

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