The summer of 2011 brought an exciting time for the Minnesota Wild. Not only was the Xcel Energy Center the site of the 2011 NHL Entry Draft, the biggest trades in Wild history took place. The Wild acquired Devin Setoguchi and prospect Charlie Coyle from the San Jose Sharks for Brent Burns. A week later, the Wild and the Sharks swapped players again, this time it was Martin Havlat for Dany Heatley. The Wild were now changing their image, and they would never look back.
Heatley was coming off a 26 goal, 38 point season and was only four years removed from a second consecutive 50-goal season. Bringing in Heatley meant bringing a level of production the Wild were looking for when they signed Martin Havlat to replace Marian Gaborik in 2009. With a new, bolstered offense, the Wild were poised to make the playoffs for the first time since the 2008-2009 season when they were Northwest Division Champions. Heatley lead the Wild in points with 24 goals and 29 assists, but the Wild again failed to make the playoffs. During that offseason, the Wild would end up shocking the sports world by signing Zach Parise and Ryan Suter to matching 13-year, 98 million dollar contracts.
In the 2012-2013 season, which was shortened to 48 games due to the lockout, Heatley tallied only 11 goals and 10 assists, but was enough to help the Wild make the post-season for the first time in four years. Even though the Wild lost to the Blackhawks in the first round, it was obvious the Wild were on the right track to being a perennial playoff team.
Last season, the Wild again made the playoffs as the first wild card and would meet the Colorado Avalanche in the opening round. Heatley, who was a healthy-scratch late in the regular season, was one of the most important players in Game 7. He had a tying goal in the second period and a pair of assists, which included a remarkably accurate pass to Kyle Brodziak on the break that set up Nino Niederreiter‘s game-winning goal.
Although Heatley didn’t produce the numbers that the Wild were hoping for when they traded for him, bringing in Heatley was the first of many exciting offseasons for the Wild who are now becoming a perennial playoff team and a serious threat in the Western Conference. On July 9th, 2014, the Anaheim Ducks signed Dany Heatley to a one-year deal ending his three-year tenure with the Wild. In those three seasons, Heatley played in 194 regular season games and posted 47 goals and 55 assists.
Let’s take a look at all of Dany Heatley’s goals in the 2013-2014 season.
#1 10/24/14 vs. Carolina Hurricanes CAR 1 – MIN 3
That’s what they took the $7.5M cap hit for.
#2 11/03/13 vs. New Jersey Devils NJD 0 – MIN 4
Heatley tips in a shot from Keith Ballard for his first goal of the year with a goaltender in the net.
#3 11/19/13 vs. Montreal Canadiens MIN 2 – MTL 6
#4 11/20/13 vs. Ottawa Senators MIN 4 – OTT 3
Heatley grabbed his second point of the night. It wasn’t pretty, but it tallies.
#5 11/27/13 vs. Phoenix Coyotes PHX 3 – MIN 1
While I like Heatley, there are elements of his game that have severely declined, but in moments like this you can start to understand how he hit 50 goals twice. Great hand-eye coordination and positioning. I’m sorry. Missed an opportunity to drop a #50in07.
#6 11/29/13 vs. Colorado Avalanche COL 3 – MIN 1
That brief moment when Niedrreiter x Heatley looked like it’d be the third line version of Granlund x Pominville. This was also Erik Haula’s first NHL point.
#7 12/19/13 vs. Pittsburgh Penguins MIN 2 – PIT 5
Heatley can assist pucks to Parise off his chest, he can score off his chest, he can assist himself off his chest.
#8 12/27/13 vs. Winnipeg Jets MIN 4 – WPG 6
Greenlay comes across as a soothsayer in this highlight.
#9 01/12/14 vs. Nashville Predators MIN 4 – NSH 0
Heatley and Coyle had some nice chemistry for a while. The game before Coyle had the Wild’s only two goals, both with a primary assist to Heatley.
#10 02/01/14 vs. Calgary Flames MIN 3 – CGY 4 (OT)
#11 02/04/14 vs. Tampa Bay Lightning TBL 1 – MIN 2
With the early 2014 Heatley had it’s hard to believe that he fell off far enough that he had to be benched.
#12 02/27/14 vs. Edmonton Oilers MIN 3 – EDM 0
Great goal from Heatley. His last regular season tally for the Wild. Also, sound guy in Edmonton, good strategy: If you can’t win the game you can at least torture them by getting that Mighty Mighty BossTones song stuck in their head.
#13 04/30/14 vs. Colorado Avalanche MIN 5 – COL 4 (OT)
Heatley got his only postseason goal in the Wild’s Game 7 win over Colorado. Pretty good time to find the back of the net.