Right when it didn’t seem like things could get worse for the Wild, they do.
According to Michael Russo of The Star Tribune, Wild captain Mikko Koivu will miss at least the next month of action thanks to a left shoulder injury suffered Saturday night against St. Louis. Koivu’s injury added to the concussion problems that both Guillaume Latendresse and Pierre-Marc Bouchard are dealing with mean that the Wild are desperately hurting for scorers.
Sure they’ve still got Dany Heatley and Devin Setoguchi, but with Koivu out that makes Matt Cullen the top center on the team. No disrespect to Cullen here, but if he’s your top center you’re in trouble.
Russo reports that Wild GM Chuck Fletcher may be desperately trying to swing a deal to help buoy the team right away, but he had already been on the hunt for added scoring when Latendresse and Bouchard went down. Dealing when you’re desperate is a bad place for a GM to be in because it means potentially making a rash decision.
The Wild are in need of keeping their postseason hopes alive, but going without Koivu essentially kills those dreams.
Minnesota will need their defense and goaltending to be impenetrable while hoping they start getting more goals from their two remaining big forwards and a lot more elsewhere. Those prospects aren’t exactly glowing, especially in the ultra competitive Western Conference.