Tuesday Tire Pump: Mikko Koivu

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Every Tuesday at PHT, we’ll pump a player’s tire. Because every player likes it when nice things are said about them.

This week’s tire pumpee: Mikko Koivu, Minnesota Wild

The captain of the top team in the NHL has at least a point in eight of his last nine games, a vital contribution to the streaking, yet still offensively-challenged, Wild.

Koivu leads Minnesota with 21 points, meaning he’s factored in at least 30 percent of his team’s 69 goals. (That’s ignoring the goals he factored in, but didn’t draw a point on.)

True, Koivu is well compensated for his work, and critics love to complain about the $47-million contract he signed in the summer of 2010. His $6.75-million cap hit is the 22nd highest in the NHL, despite the fact the most points he’s scored in a season is 71 (2009-10).

But Minnesota doesn’t exactly run and gun. If it did, Koivu’s offensive numbers would be better. The 28-year-old Finn has bought in to new coach Mike Yeo’s system and the team’s win-loss record speaks for itself.

Mikko Koivu, everyone.