Minnesota Wild: What Should the Expectations Be?


The Wild are in a battle for first place in the Western Conference, how does that change expectations for this team?  With a great first half showing a deep playoff run could be in the future for this club.

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Coming into this season, the Wild seemed at a crossroads. Although the team was fresh off its fourth straight playoff appearance, the team had done little to improve its roster and there were signs of regression. Thus, although a playoff berth may have been the expectation for this team, no one expected this team to be among the very best in the NHL at the halfway point of the season.

However, that is exactly where the Wild find themselves. Battling for first place in the Western Conference and home ice advantage throughout the playoffs. Should the team keep it up, it will provide a much needed boost for a team that plays its best hockey at the Xcel Energy Center. A boost this team has lacked the past four years when they have never had the higher seed in a playoff series.

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NHL: Minnesota Wild at Dallas Stars
NHL: Minnesota Wild at Dallas Stars /

So how does the success from the first half of the season change the expectations for this team going forward? Well, for starters, anytime you are the higher seed in a series the expectation is to win that series. And it seems at the very least the Wild will have four home games in the first round of the playoffs. So it would seem the expectation is for this team to win at least one playoff series.

On top of a playoff series win, there should be aspirations during the regular season. Given the success the team has seen in the first couple months, it should be a reasonable expectation for the Wild to earn one of the top two seeds in the Western Conference. Right now they find themselves in a battle for the top seed with Chicago. However, the Wild still hold games in hand on the Blackhawks so they have positioned themselves well thus far to be the 1 seed.

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No matter what the result ends up being, the success the team has enjoyed in the first half of this season has significantly raised the expectations for their finish.  If they keep playing like this who knows how far they’ll go.