Tag: Jonas Brodin

Zach Parise

Wild ’15-16 Outlook


When looking at the Minnesota Wild, it’s easy to see their potential, but without making any major additions over the summer, are they in a position to get past the second round for the first time since 2003?

To a decent extent, Minnesota’s fate rests on Devan Dubnyk’s shoulders. This is a team that was in a free fall when he was acquired and his stellar play helped right the ship. Minnesota doesn’t necessarily need him to win the Vezina Trophy, but if he struggles mightily, as he did in 2013-2014, then Minnesota could be in serious trouble. Of course Darcy Kuemper and perhaps even Niklas Backstrom could step up to fill the void in that scenario, but Backstrom is 37 years old with a history of injuries while Kuemper is coming off of an erratic campaign.

Part of the reason why so much rides on Dubnyk though is because Minnesota’s offense hasn’t been anything to write home about. Which is a shame because in theory, Zach Parise, Jason Pominville, Thomas Vanek, and Mikko Koivu should make for a great core and when you throw in promising youngsters like Mikael Granlund, Nino Niederreiter, and Charlie Coyle, the potential is there for the Wild to be more than a middle of the road team when it comes to offensive production.

That’s what they were last season though, in part because Koivu regressed while Granlund, Niederreiter, and Coyle weren’t able to make meaningful offensive improvements compared to their 2013-14 campaigns. Perhaps that will change this season though and if it does, that would certainly take some of the pressure off of the Wild’s goaltending.

As far as their defense goes, Ryan Suter is expected to once again play in nearly half of every game. Jared Spurgeon, Marco Scandella, and Jonas Brodin are projected to make major contributions too, but the X-factor is 21-year-old Matt Dumba as he should play a bigger role in his sophomore campaign after being limited to 15:00 minutes per contest last season.

The makings of a contender are there. It’s just a question of if everyone will click this time around.

Wild re-sign Folin to two-year, reportedly one-way deal


The Minnesota Wild announced via Twitter that they have re-signed 24-year-old defenseman Christian Folin to a two-year contract.

According to Michael Russo of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, it’s a one-way contract with an annual cap hit of $725,000 per season.

From the Minneapolis Star-Tribune:

Most interesting is it’s a full one-way contract. That currently gives the Wild eight defensemen if Mike Reilly makes the team (Ryan Suter, Jonas Brodin, Marco Scandella, Jared Spurgeon, Reilly, Matt Dumba, Nate Prosser and Folin).

I use the word “interesting” because if the Wild keeps eight defensemen and Niklas Backstrom remains on the roster once the season starts as a third goaltender, the Wild could only keep 12 forwards (no extras).

In 40 regular season games with the Wild last season, the former university hockey standout scored twice and recorded 10 points. Minnesota signed Folin as a college free agent in March, 2014.

Wild beat the Blues for the second time in a week

Justin Fontaine

In what could be a first-round playoff matchup between the two Central Division rivals, the Wild doubled up the Blues 6-3 Saturday afternoon.

For the moment the Wild have a three-point lead on the first wild card spot in the Western Conference.

Minnesota has now beaten St. Louis twice in the span of seven days.

Justin Fontaine had a goal and two assists for his second career three-point game.

Zach Parise and Jonas Brodin scored 26-seconds apart in the second period to give the Wild a 4-0 lead and end Brian Elliott’s night early. Elliott allowed four goals on 16 shots.

“Five-10 minutes of the second period we weren’t very good. It’s pretty inexcusable at this time of the year,” said Jay Bouwmeester. “We know we’re playing desperate teams. They’re a team that’s right there and trying to stay in that playoff race.

“We’ve got to be a team that’s playing for first place.”

Chris Stewart, Thomas Vanek and Mikko Koivu had the other Wild goals.

Devan Dubnyk made 26 saves in his 31st consecutive start.

Vladimir Tarasenko and Jaden Schwartz each had a goal and an assist in the loss. With his two-point afternoon, Tarasenko now has 70 points on the season.

Paul Stastny also scored for St. Louis.

“There’s no excuses, we’re playing a team that’s desperate for their playoff lives and we’re trying to situate ourselves in the Central Division,” said David Backes. “You shouldn’t need anymore motivation at this time of the year.

“We need to be playing our brand of hockey every night, putting it all out there and if a team just plays better than us, we’ve got to tip our cap, but I don’t think we can say that tonight.”

Blues defenseman Carl Gunnarsson left the game with 13:50 remaining in the second period with an upper body injury and did not return.

Jake Allen made 10 saves in relief.

Video: Wild chase Elliott after scoring 4 goals on 16 shots

St Louis Blues v Philadelphia Flyers

The Minnesota Wild scored four on their first 16 shots Saturday afternoon chasing St. Louis Blues’ starter Brian Elliott.

Chris Stewart opened the scoring at 7:47 of the first period. Thomas Vanek gave Minnesota a 2-0 lead at 12:14 of the opening frame.

The Wild then scored twice in a 26-span of the second period to take a 4-0 lead.

Jake Allen has replaced Elliott in the Blues net.

The Wild entered Saturday’s action with a one-point lead on the Winnipeg Jets for the first wild card spot in the Western Conference and seven points back of the Chicago Blackhawks for the third seed in the Central Division.

Wild’s Suter reportedly questionable to play against Canucks

Boston Bruins v Minnesota Wild

It’s the Minnesota Wild against the Vancouver Canucks in a match-up prior to kickoff on Super Bowl Sunday, however the Wild could be without one of its top defensemen in Ryan Suter.

From the Minneapolis Star Tribune:

Ryan Suter, who got banged up Tuesday in Edmonton, missed his second practice this week Saturday and coach Mike Yeo indicated that he’s questionable to play against the Canucks. Suter, who has been visibly limping ever since the Oilers game and didn’t take part in the Wild’s off-ice workout at its hotel Friday, may not be the one to decide if he plays.

Yeo said if the Wild feels this is an injury that is going to nag him for three weeks, the team will be careful with him and hold him out against the Canucks. It would be a big loss as he’s been one of the team’s best defensemen the past three games.

If Suter doesn’t play (would be his first non-mumps related Wild absence), Christian Folin will draw back into the lineup and be paired with Jonas Brodin.

Suter played more than 29 minutes against the Oilers, and was in the lineup two nights later against the Calgary Flames. That evening, he played just under 24 minutes, which is well below his average per game on the season.

Meanwhile, the Canucks are coming off a 5-2 win over the Buffalo Sabres, now losers of 14 straight, on Friday. They finally snapped a scoring slump on home ice, having been shut out in their previous two games at Rogers Arena.

Starting Sunday, the Canucks and Wild will face each other three times in the next 16 days.