Where Do We Go From Here?
The Minnesota Wild are likely living out The Athletic’s Dom Luszczysyn’s prediction for the team at the beginning of the season (subscription required):
"The Wild are probably too good to fail… …But also not good enough to compete either."
Further, the Minnesota Wild have been bitten by the injury bug. Currently, Mikko Koivu is on IR, listed as week-to-week with a lower-body injury, Greg Pateryn hasn’t played a NHL game all season after having surgery to solve a Sports Hernia during training camp, and Jared Spurgeon is still out for another week with a hand injury. This doesn’t include Eric Staal, who could be injured after an awkward collision with a linesman, and Devan Dubnyk who is away with a personal family matter.
Even when the roster is fully healthy, there’s an availability issue on the roster. Because of the emergence in Carson Soucy this year, Nick Seeler hasn’t seen significant time. Further, when all the forwards are healthy, forwards have been in and out of the lineup, like Victor Rask, who has improved play from last season, and Ryan Donato, who has improved play since the start of the season.
Here’s my take:
I believe whether the Minnesota Wild make the playoffs or commit to the rebuild this year, they’re playing with house money. The Wild have been surprised with the development in prospects like Alexander Khovanov, Jack McBain, and the Promised One- Kiril Kaprizov, the success of the new core of this team -like Joel Eriksson Ek, Jordan Greenway, Luke Kunin, Kevin Fiala, and Ryan Donato-, the performance and depth of the current roster, and the apparent culture and stability Bill Guerin has developed in St. Paul should have the fanbase excited.