Setoguchi's return could boost Wild

  • Article by: MICHAEL RUSSO , Star Tribune
  • Updated: January 3, 2012 - 12:10 AM

The Wild needs to get healthy and halt this slump.

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ctillhockeyJan. 2, 12 8:48 PM

The decision was announced: Torres gets 2 games. At first I thought this had to do with Minnesota, but then Shanahan explained in the video that it was because Torres was warned two games in a row for leaving his feet and aiming at guys' heads. In fact, he was handed a fine just two hours before our game! Not smart.. Anyway, glad to hear Seto is close to being back!! Same with Stoner and Wellman. I hope we can get back to our winning ways. Go Wild!!

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mrblueskyJan. 3, 12 6:16 AM

It will be great getting these guys back in play! Lets get on a roll again! GO WILD!

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misternoallJan. 3, 12 6:49 AM

i see the Pomm Pomms are out today, not even a game day for cripes sake. A little Wild trivia, what member of the Wild as the by far the worst plus minus ration on the team ?................. Seto with his minus 7...... for fun lets play again, what team is in the bottom third of the league for scoring goals......... Minnesota Wild...... If you cant score enough goals then you need to win by playing good team defense...... Forget Glat he is gone but lets not forget that Pouliot is becoming a solid pro in Boston under the veteran coach, you can see some of his highlight goals on youtube, Lemaire said he would come along about this time

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jakemanoJan. 3, 12 9:34 AM

Before the injuries piled up, the team was playing as well as a Minnesota Wild team has ever played. Wellman looked like he belonged and even though Setoguchi was being tossed around different lines, he brought some skill to the lineup and speed. We were able to withstand a couple injuries for a while, but more came and with people shuffling in and out from Houston, I think we just got off track. By no means do I think we were a top 5 team in this league and the Canucks will eventually win this division without much effort. Can we hold on to a playoff spot? We need to stay healthy and start playing the way we were a month ago. Heatley and Koivu have been playing very well together and I would like to think that some of Dany's shots will start to go in. It seems like he has been robbed on numerous occasions of late.

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uffda57Jan. 3, 12 9:43 AM

Watching this team in the past 10 games, I've come to the conclusion that it is immaturity that is hurting this team. It started with all the injuries. The team fought through them and kept winning, but eventually the fact that the Wild had become the Houston Aeros caught up with them. Lines were broken up and shifted to deal with the injuries, and the great chemistry that Brodziak and Cullen had on their lines was destroyed. Getting injured guys back will help, especially if the lines that were scoring before the slump, like Brodziak's, can be reunited. In the end though, the Wild is suffering from being so young in too many places. The Canucks may win the division, although they don't look as solid as last year, but no one seriously expected the Wild to take the division this year. The goal was a playoff slot, which I think they will still pull off, but they have to get some maturity. Still waiting for a trade or two that can help in that area.

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wildinwisJan. 3, 12 9:55 AM

@misternoall......some of us never put our "pomm pomms" away. Like uffda57 said,who ever thought they'd be at the top this year ( and it sure was fun being there!), playoff spot was the goal & I too think we'll make one, better yet ...look out next year and down the road!! GO WILD!!!

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uffda57Jan. 3, 1210:29 AM

The pieces are coming together for this team, and the unexpected run this year is just icing on the cake. We have guys like Granlund and Phillips and more on the way, and as they begin to show their talents, the team will become a force in the new, as-yet-unnamed division. I don't think we'll be fretting over a lack of scoring in future years.

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abemntocalJan. 3, 1210:50 AM

Thanks for asking the question on why Schultz plays every night Mr. Russo. I fail to understand why he continues to play whether he is effective or not.

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floridascottJan. 3, 12 1:05 PM

Everyone has ranted about the poor contracts of guys like PMB, Backs, Cullen, Zids, even Mikko is overpaid by about a 1M (in my opinion). But the Schultz contract is BY FAR the worst contract of them all for two reasons......(1) Length..6 years at 3.5M is just ridiculous. Its a contract that basically can not be traded until the last year. (2) At the very least, when all the players above are hot.... they can win you games, they can carry you for a night with a 3 point game and get you a 4-2 win. Sure NS plays very solid D (most of the time) but he certainly is not a game changer. At 3.5M a year you need that element in your game to justify the paycheck. Now with all that being said, It very difficult to blame Nick Schultz for the money he makes because he has been the same player his entire career. When DR put the contract in front Schultz he did so knowing that he will get you 10 points a year. Nick Schultz is essentially doing exactly what the Wild expected him to do when he signed the deal. It's just that the contract was 2 years to long and 1M a year to much. So in conclusion..... I guess this just another rant on the terrible job that DR did in the last 5 or so years as the GM of the Wild.

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uffda57Jan. 3, 12 2:15 PM

Because hockey has a hard salary cap, it puts a premium on the GM's ability to create a vision of the type of team they want to build, sign the players that fit into that vision, and then negotiate a reasonable contract with those players. I often doubt whether Dougie had any of those points in place during his career here. It seemed like he signed the kinds of players that Jacques wanted, but didn't have an overall sense of where the team should be in 2, 3, 5 or 10 years down the line. His lack of ability in drafting and trading players wasn't obvious early on because Jacques overperformed with the players he had, and there was always the ready excuse that the Wild was just an expansion team, so you shouldn't expect much too early on. Fletcher clearly knows what kind of team he wants to build, has the negotiating and trading skills to get those players, and is clearly the one in charge, not the coach. I think Dougie was content to sit back and let Jacques basically run the show.

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