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CreaseAndAssist

Kaapo Kahkonen is making the Wild's playoff goaltending decision tougher

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I thought Kahkonen looked great again today at the Wild's scrimmage.  I realize he played just two periods (and OT) total in the two scrimmages but he's looked as sharp as anyone.  I give my thoughts on what that could mean for the team heading into its play in series against Vancouver as well as how it could mean for the future of a certain veteran goalie.  Enjoy and discuss.  

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17 hours ago, CreaseAndAssist said:

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I thought Kahkonen looked great again today at the Wild's scrimmage.  I realize he played just two periods (and OT) total in the two scrimmages but he's looked as sharp as anyone.  I give my thoughts on what that could mean for the team heading into its play in series against Vancouver as well as how it could mean for the future of a certain veteran goalie.  Enjoy and discuss.  

I am thinking , that Kahkonen would be the best choice as a starter goalie against Vancouver. He was great in both Wild's scrimmage games(did not allowed any goals in his net) and really merit be a starter goalie. Second choice is Stalock  after the first game if we loose.

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Well, I'll tell you who it shouldn't be - Dubnyk...  His GAA (3.25) and Save% (.890) are by far his worst numbers in his 6 seasons there...  

 

 

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I agree 100%.  Dubnyk looked the same in the scrimmage as he did during the season.  Sub-par.  But I heard he's going to split time with Stalock today against Colorado.  Not sure why...

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On 7/29/2020 at 10:04 AM, CreaseAndAssist said:

I agree 100%.  Dubnyk looked the same in the scrimmage as he did during the season.  Sub-par.  But I heard he's going to split time with Stalock today against Colorado.  Not sure why...

Surprisingly, Dubnyk was not too bad against Colorado, which we lost with a score 2:3. He did not allowed any goals in that exhibition game in comparison to Stalock who allowed 3 goals in our net. Unfortunately, they did not tried Kahkonen to see his potential in that game.

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Colorado wasn't attacking as hard.  He still had some fumbles with the puck and at times I saw him struggling to track the puck moving around the ice.  IMO, keeping him as the backup is a sign the country club is still in effect with this Wild team, sadly.  

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So they left Kahkonen out of the series which, seeing the outcome, might be good. There's a clean table for him come the next season. 

 

You can stick a fork in Dubnyk and Stalock, they are done as starters. Neither one has "it" anymore. Can't imagine a team, who definitely has to go at least on a partial rebuild mode with this roster, wanting to give either one of them a one more chance as the starter.

 

Kahkonen is trending upwards, D & S down for a while. Next season? This quite frankly is a gimme. 

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(shrugs)  Stalock is cheap.  He's not really hurting anything.  Dubnyk IMO is the bigger what if simply because of his contract.  Some feel he'll be bought out, others feel he'll be traded.  I'm fine with moving on.  Should it go to being Kahkonen's crease next year?  I'd probably ease him into it.  

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Keep in mind Stalock was signed to a three year deal to make him eligible for the Seattle expansion draft. They can’t expose Dubnyk (Last year of contract and limited NTC) and I don’t believe Kahkonen is eligible. 

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1 hour ago, IllaZilla said:

Keep in mind Stalock was signed to a three year deal to make him eligible for the Seattle expansion draft. They can’t expose Dubnyk (Last year of contract and limited NTC) and I don’t believe Kahkonen is eligible. 

I think they will do with Dubnyk same way as they did with Backstrom for one entire year who did not played at all for us(was sitting at the bench) and then was sent for a few games at the end of the year to other team(probably Calgary if I remember) to finish his career. We had 3 official goalies at that year. IMO, Kahkonen should be as a #1 goalie for this team. Expecting his jerseys will be selling well too.  

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13 hours ago, CreaseAndAssist said:

(shrugs)  Stalock is cheap.  He's not really hurting anything.  Dubnyk IMO is the bigger what if simply because of his contract.  Some feel he'll be bought out, others feel he'll be traded.  I'm fine with moving on.  Should it go to being Kahkonen's crease next year?  I'd probably ease him into it.  

That's right but (in my mind) I excluded his contract from this discussion. Stalock has had his chance to show if he can take the starter's job. He obviously can't so what to do with him next season is to me a very marginal question. At least no need to hurt Kahkonen's development by giving Stalock another chance. 

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3 hours ago, Hockey-78 said:

That's right but (in my mind) I excluded his contract from this discussion. Stalock has had his chance to show if he can take the starter's job. He obviously can't so what to do with him next season is to me a very marginal question. At least no need to hurt Kahkonen's development by giving Stalock another chance. 

 

I don't think if he plays 25-30 games as a backup to Stalock will hurt his development.  If you don't think playing 25-30 NHL games is good enough, I guess you have him starting 45-50 games in Iowa.  Is that really better?  Then we keep Dubnyk as backup and hear him whine.  By the way, I heard a rumor on a podcast about what Dubnyk's wife's health issue was.  

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3 hours ago, CreaseAndAssist said:

 

I don't think if he plays 25-30 games as a backup to Stalock will hurt his development.  If you don't think playing 25-30 NHL games is good enough, I guess you have him starting 45-50 games in Iowa.  Is that really better?  Then we keep Dubnyk as backup and hear him whine.  By the way, I heard a rumor on a podcast about what Dubnyk's wife's health issue was.  

I honestly don't see why their roles should be those and couldn't be vice versa, Kahkonen getting 45+ starts. He's old enough to handle the workload both physically and mentally.

 

This is the perfect time for the team to bring in new faces. The current face of the Wild is quite frankly pretty boring, stagnated and old. This coming from a marketing point of view too. Kahkonen might be the next Merzlikins, who knows. Throw him in the deep end - sooner they find out it the better.

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I don't really have an issue with that approach; and keep Stalock as a cheap backup option.  I agree, the team needs to be more youth focused for sure and the marketing of the old foagies has to go.  

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Finnish Broadcasting Company YLE interviewed Kahkonen:

 

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It's in Finnish, unfortunately. My impression was that KK accepts the situation of needing to fight for the place in the sun, and can cope with the frustration of not getting the spot yet. My guess from the interview would be that frustration would only start to mount by next fall, if he had played well, and would still not be in the big league. He has not played for months now and that is a factor when he gets back in action, but feels that he's ready for the fast ride when it starts.

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Kahkonen will be another name in the list of prospects getting hosed by the Wild organization. 

 

LOL. So the team has no #1 goalie and what do they do: overpay a washed-up goalie and hand a two way contract to the best goalie in the AHL last year. LMAO, can you provide a  motivational speech than that.

 

 

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Yeah, I know. If I was Kahkonen, I would probably be out of mind with frustration. But he seems fine with it. Developing goalies is weird. We don't want a Kuemper situation. As in having a potential home run goalie, who suddenly turns out to be really shaky any time he gives up a goal. Shelter the goalie to let him grow, and then stop sheltering him to let him grow even bigger - but how does one know when it's the right time?

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14 hours ago, lynxrattle said:

Yeah, I know. If I was Kahkonen, I would probably be out of mind with frustration. But he seems fine with it. Developing goalies is weird. We don't want a Kuemper situation. As in having a potential home run goalie, who suddenly turns out to be really shaky any time he gives up a goal. Shelter the goalie to let him grow, and then stop sheltering him to let him grow even bigger - but how does one know when it's the right time?

The list of Wild goaltending prospects, aka development projects, that have turned into a success is a very short one.

 

Actually, in the history of Wild there isn't a single goalie drafted by the Wild who's been a clear cut starter for more than a season. Although Backstrom began his career with the Wild, he was undrafted. Lots of failures though for one reason or another (Harding, Kuemper, Khudobin, Hackett).

 

This speaks volumes. The Wild no **** about developing their goalie prospects.

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9 hours ago, Hockey-78 said:

The list of Wild goaltending prospects, aka development projects, that have turned into a success is a very short one.

 

Actually, in the history of Wild there isn't a single goalie drafted by the Wild who's been a clear cut starter for more than a season. Although Backstrom began his career with the Wild, he was undrafted. Lots of failures though for one reason or another (Harding, Kuemper, Khudobin, Hackett).

 

This speaks volumes. The Wild no **** about developing their goalie prospects.

This is probably a reason they finally let Mason go.

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      Hidden Content   I thought Kahkonen looked great again today at the Wild's scrimmage.  I realize he played just two periods (and OT) total in the two scrimmages but he's looked as sharp as anyone.  I give my thoughts on what that could mean for the team heading into its play in series against Vancouver as well as how it could mean for the future of a certain veteran goalie.  Enjoy and discuss.  
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      So they left Kahkonen out of the series which, seeing the outcome, might be good. There's a clean table for him come the next season.    You can stick a fork in Dubnyk and Stalock, they are done as starters. Neither one has "it" anymore. Can't imagine a team, who definitely has to go at least on a partial rebuild mode with this roster, wanting to give either one of them a one more chance as the starter.   Kahkonen is trending upwards, D & S down for a while. Next season?
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      I don't really have an issue with that approach; and keep Stalock as a cheap backup option.  I agree, the team needs to be more youth focused for sure and the marketing of the old foagies has to go.  

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