It’s been a stomach-churning couple weeks for the Minnesota Wild and their fans. The team was decided underdogs against the Colorado Avalanche, and much more so against the Chicago Blackhawks.
The Minnesota Wild have returned defenseman Keith Ballard to the lineup for Game 3 of their Western Conference semifinal against Chicago. Coach Mike Yeo confirmed the change after the pre-game skate Tuesday. Ballard replaced Nate Prosser on the third blue line pair.
In Game 6 of the series versus Colorado, the best players for the Minnesota Wild proved to be just that. Zach Parise had a four-point night (2G, 2A) including the game-winning goal. Mikko Koivu and Ryan Suter added two assists as Minnesota defeated Colorado 5-2 to even the series at 3-3, forcing Game 7 in Denver.
On April 8, the Minnesota Wild clinched a berth in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. What was yet to be determined was who their opponent in the first round would be. The thought was the Wild would face either Anaheim or St. Louis, both of whom were leading their respective divisions at the time. When the dust settled on the regular season Sunday, it was the Colorado Avalanche who turned out to be Minnesota’s opponent in the first round.
Mikko Koivu scored for Minnesota and Ilya Bryzgalov denied all three Boston shots in the shootout, lifting the Wild to a 4-3 victory over the Bruins on Tuesday night that clinched a wild-card spot in the Western Conference playoffs.
Matt Moulson and Mikko Koivu scored 62 seconds apart early in the third period, and Zach Parise connected during a power play for the Wild, who snapped the Kings’ six-game winning streak with a 3-2 victory on Monday night.
Depleted by injuries, and maybe just due for a drop-off, the Detroit Red Wings have found their remarkable 22-season streak of reaching the playoffs in jeopardy. Well, with 12 games to go, they are still in line for a spot. Gustav Nyquist’s third-period goal gave the Red Wings a 3-2 victory Saturday over the Minnesota Wild, their fourth win in five games.
Ryan Johansen scored a disputed goal in the fourth round of the shootout to lift the Columbus Blue Jackets to a 2-1 victory over the Minnesota Wild on Saturday night. Johansen’s shot initially was ruled a rebound, but a video review showed that Wild goalie Darcy Kuemper did not touch the puck, making it a legal shootout goal.
It’s an exciting and a bit of a strange time for the Minnesota Wild, who are ready to make a push in the final 23 games, but are unsure of who will be available off the injured list.
The Minnesota Wild were reeling as last year ended. Star Zach Parise was on injured reserve. Coach Mike Yeo’s job was in jeopardy.
Minnesota Wild center Mikko Koivu decided his surgically repaired right ankle has not healed enough to allow him to play for Finland in the Olympics. Koivu, who had surgery after fracturing his right ankle while blocking a shot on Jan. 4, has been out the past 15 games for Minnesota heading into the Olympic break.
Wednesday is a big day at the U of M. Why? Find out when you listen to Dave and Sid…..click the link to listen.
Will Mikko Koivu play in the Olympics? Click the link to find out why the Wild want him to…..
Mikko Koivu’s return to the Minnesota Wild likely won’t come until after the Olympics, leaving his availability for Finland during the Winter Games in question. Koivu broke his right ankle Jan. 4 when he was hit by a puck and had surgery to accelerate the recovery. The captain and first-line center has resumed skating, but Wild coach Mike Yeo told reporters after practice Monday that Koivu’s availability for the last two games before the Olympics break was “highly in doubt.”
As many as five Minnesota Wild players will play for their native countries in the Winter Olympics next month. Forwards Mikael Granlund and Mikko Koivu were named Tuesday to Finland’s roster. Koivu’s participation is in question because of a broken ankle he suffered Saturday and had surgery to fix Monday.