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CreaseAndAssist last won the day on May 30

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About CreaseAndAssist

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  1. While I've heard nothing but good things about his effort and creativity, I do question his ability to score himself. It will be interesting to see what he's like once he recovers from yet another major injury.
  2. They Were Once Wild: The Star Talent That Passed Through Minnesota In this retrospective, I look back at the Star talent that was not drafted by the team and stayed here less than 5 seasons. Collectively its not a bad team I put together, but too bad we didn't get most of them when they were in their prime. Check it out and discuss.
  3. While I think Berube is not the kind of guy to put up with anyone's crap, let's be honest...until Binnington arrived they had no shot because leaky Jake Allen was giving up 3+ goals per game. Once they stopped giving up soft goals, the offense started to re-ignite and build around Ryan O'Reilly who was the only Blues player having a great season prior to the firing of Mike Yeo. But after that, I agree. They are a team well-built for playoff hockey. They have a blueline that is pretty big and fairly mobile and physical where you need them to be. The rest of their team plays with a fair amount of grit and they have skill and scoring all throughout the lineup. Toss in a solid goaltender...and you can do a lot of damage with that lineup. Ryan O'Reilly is a star player who is great defensively, rarely takes penalties and can be a clutch scorer. The Wild are not even close to the St. Louis Blues in design. If they think its as easy as just having a decent goalie and excelling they're fooling themselves. St. Louis is a way more complete team. They were underachieving under Yeo. For whatever reason...his message got old quick and like what happened here...a lot of the players gave up on him. We are much older, slower and far less physical or resilient (mentally, physically maybe even emotionally) than that team IMO. The Wild don't play like a team...they play like a bunch of small cliques that will occasionally step up to help the team win on occasion. But there are plenty of nights where no one wants to step up and everyone seems to be waiting for someone to carry the load. IMO, another sign of our messed up locker room. Oh and one last thing. Before anyone says maybe Berube would be able to fix things here. Do you think Berube would have the same control with this Wild team than the Blues? I don't think so. The vets rule the roost as Richards, Yeo, Torchetti and even Boudreau has found out. I don't think Boudreau is a shrinking violet, but he also probably is smart enough to pick his battles and knows which ones he'll lose. The vets do as they please and he simply tries to work around that dynamic as much as he can because he knows its not going to change. Berube doesn't / didn't have to worry about that. Afterall, even until they hoisted a cup he was the interim coach...but I don't think the players there had the owner in their pocket the way our vets do here. Just a thought...
  4. Rask at this point...is a $4 million player working the James Sheppard Memorial Popcorn Machine. I honestly don't see where he fits on this team. And if you are playing him, you're not doing so because of what he may do out on the ice but because you don't want to waste money having him sitting up in the press box.
  5. The Minnesota Wild is in Denial It is time this team took an objective look at itself. The hints have been piling up for sometime, its time they take heed from what these 'messages' are telling them.
  6. They both should be at the Traverse City Tournament. IMO, and they better be motivated and playing hard. Or I'd just send them to Iowa right away. They need to figure out they can't take any opportunity for granted.
  7. (shrugs) I'd agree. I'd guess Wild management was hoping Greenway would flip a switch and felt if he decided to dominate he could be a game changer in that series. Instead, he continued to go through the motions. While we know pretty well that Wild upper management was not pleased with Greenway and Donato's play, did anyone on the Iowa Wild say anything to those two about it? Did Cal O'Reilly or some of the other veteran leaders confront these players and tell them to start pulling their weight or that the team needed more from them. Hendricks and Sokolov never played together unless it was in a pre-season game. But I think they do perhaps know each other a little and Sokolov probably realizes earning Hendricks' approval is probably a chance to maybe get more opportunity next year. Lines? I hate speculating because I think the Wild still need to make a trade of some kind. I saw a proposed set of lines on the Athletic (Russo didn't write it) and he had Koivu on the 4th line and I think we all know that will never happen. We know it won't be any of the big money, but I think they need to consider moving Ek or Greenway. I'd let Rask start at 3rd line center if Koivu's not at 100%. In fact, I really wouldn't let Koivu come back unless he's at 100%. So here's how I see it. I think this group distributes the scoring, speed, and gives you a pretty reasonable shut down / checking line. Now will Koivu let himself be the 3rd line center? Greenway and Donato can play in Iowa next year. I want to see them humbled and they'll develop more by getting top minutes there and they better be dominating if they want to have a chance to get called up. Minnesota Wild lines... Parise-Staal-Zuccarello Zucker-Kunin-Fiala Eriksson Ek-Koivu-Hartman Foligno-Sturm-Mayhew Rask Suter-Spurgeon Brodin-Dumba Pateryn-Hunt Seeler Dubnyk Stalock Iowa Wild lines... Greenway-Dumont-Donato Rau-Johnson-Bitten Anas-Sokolov-Beck Liambas-Lodnia/Dewar-Duhaime Menell-Bartkowski Soucy-Belpedio Gordeev-Warner Falkovsky Kahkonen Robson
  8. IMO, good for both teams. Chicago obviously felt deep enough with young defenseman that it could let Jokiharju go to add another young, skilled forward. The Blackhawks have a really youthful group right now and a young coach to go with it.
  9. Nesterenko looked better than I expected. I knew he had a lot of points but in a lesser league. But I certainly see what the team sees in him. He's a skilled guy that is kind of lanky and certainly needs to fill out but he thinks the game well and seems to have some skill / instincts going for him. Beyond a few flashes, Boldy was just ok to me. I noticed other players more. Although I will give him this credit, when he does get the puck in a scoring position he needs little time to release that puck and I do like that he likes the backhand, a shot you don't see nearly as much anymore. I am still concerned about his mobility. Lodnia, Khovanov were big standouts for me. Lodnia looked mature and I was impressed by his overall play. He played well at both ends of the ice. Khovanov seemed like a player on a bit different level in terms of his offensive awareness and creativity. Its tough sometimes to watch from afar and realize if a player is dominant or just fortunate enough to be in a position to pad their stats. He looked skilled and dominant on his shifts and seemed to cause problems for defenders. He seemed quicker this year, no doubt helped by the fact he was healthy most of the season. As far as Sokolov goes. He's a terrific finisher. No doubt about it. The thing I liked about Sokolov's performance was the fact that he was dominant when he should be dominant. You looked very motivated and I liked that he was being social out there; like you'd hope to see from a player whose confident and a bit older. Its tough to say whether the team was impressed with his physical conditioning which is really the main hang up on him. Beyond that, I really did not hear any remotely negative things about him. Even as he was a healthy scratch during the playoffs, I heard he worked hard and didn't complain as a black ace which is why at the very end he got put back in the lineup as they were looking for an offensive burst.
  10. Maybe its just me, but as soon as Zuccarello asked for that, I'd be like..."Ok Mats, we'll consider that for a while and call you back." And I wouldn't call him back. The more times I read Fenton and his stupid lizard-stick comments, I feel like we just sort of threw all of that on the table at him right at the start. He wasn't getting offers like that from other teams, and like he said himself he began to think, "Damn, I'm good." Well of course, a person just gave you a much greater offer than you were expecting and gave you the keys to the kingdom for 3 years of your contract with a full NMC. We were desperate we were going to lose him so we pushed all in. IMO, if Fenton had any brains at all. When Pavelski decided 'nah' and not fly to St. Paul our efforts should have been 100% in on signing Simmonds to a 1-year deal. The Devils IMO, are in a better place than the Wild in terms of their teams' collective age and their young talent...but 1 or 2 years with no NMC to Simmonds made a helluva lot more sense from a need stand point than Zuccarello for 5 years with an NMC. He's younger, and the 1-year deal is a no brainer. Simmonds has all of the motivation to play well if he wants to get another nice contract and if he doesn't, then he's probably easy trade bait at the deadline. I kind of feel like when Fenton fixates on someone, then he fully commits and objectivity and everything else kind of fly out the window. Like Fenton's fixation of getting Fiala. He didn't seem to even consider the possibility of anything other than a 'hockey trade' 1-for-1 for Granlund / Fiala. By the way, I am not sure who all subscribes to the Athletic, but this article by Sean McEndoe is pure genius and 100% true. 20 Stages of Watching Your Team Make a Horrible Free Agency Mistake
  11. (shrugs) Nico Sturm looks to me like he could be a decent 3rd or 4th line center to start. I just don't see this team moving #12 or #9 off the top 6. Sturm plays responsible defensively I think he'd be able to play that role and not look like a fish out of water. The more I think about Joel Eriksson Ek, the more I want to see the club try trade him. I saw some suggesting the Wild deal Eriksson Ek for Pujuljarvi who is a right shot, right wing. IMO, Luke Kunin should be the player we're working into the Top 6 and having Koivu play 3rd line. Now if we could only get someone to take away slow frail ghost Victor Rask... I guess for myself, while I would not be upset or disappointed to see Sturm start the season in Iowa to get more minutes but I think he projects more as a bottom 6 center anyways. No matter what, I think his strength and maturity have been obvious from the start. He's a bit older too, so I am not sure you want him spending another season or two in the minors. Just my 2 cents. I am not in favor of simply giving him a spot, make him earn it; but I think he really would with his work ethic, strength along the boards and ability to use his bigger body to protect the puck. Call me vindictive but I really want to see Greenway and Donato start in Iowa to humble them a bit. Make them stay their a month and appreciate the fact they should give their best ALL of the time no matter if you're in St. Paul or Des Moines.
  12. Lodnia will probably be in Iowa, but Khovanov will be back in the QMJHL most likely. Guskov, back to the OHL.
  13. Do you think Zuccarello asked for the NMC? Or does Minnesota feel it has to toss that in to compel free agents to even consider coming here? Just like 2nd round picks seem to be in the candy dish on Chuck Fletcher's desk to give away, NMC's were in the bowl right next to it....
  14. From an Iowa perspective, they look like they will have some nice additions to the roster, at least up front. Gordeev will be a nice addition to the blueline. A big player with more skill and mobility than you'd expect. If I was Tim Army and Brett McLean I'd really like what I saw at camp.
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