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Tuesday Tire Pump: Mikko Koivu

Dec 6, 2011, 7:08 PM EDT

Mikko Koivu AP

Every Tuesday at PHT, we’ll pump a player’s tire. Because every player likes it when nice things are said about them.

This week’s tire pumpee: Mikko Koivu, Minnesota Wild

The captain of the top team in the NHL has at least a point in eight of his last nine games, a vital contribution to the streaking, yet still offensively-challenged, Wild.

Koivu leads Minnesota with 21 points, meaning he’s factored in at least 30 percent of his team’s 69 goals. (That’s ignoring the goals he factored in, but didn’t draw a point on.)

True, Koivu is well compensated for his work, and critics love to complain about the $47-million contract he signed in the summer of 2010. His $6.75-million cap hit is the 22nd highest in the NHL, despite the fact the most points he’s scored in a season is 71 (2009-10).

But Minnesota doesn’t exactly run and gun. If it did, Koivu’s offensive numbers would be better. The 28-year-old Finn has bought in to new coach Mike Yeo’s system and the team’s win-loss record speaks for itself.

Mikko Koivu, everyone.

  1. icedtearex - Dec 6, 2011 at 8:00 PM

    Pretty damn boring to watch this team play and its spreading.30 teams coached by Jacques Lemaire equals no fans.

    • theyarecalledbreezers - Dec 6, 2011 at 8:44 PM

      What’s boring is your inability to say something relevant.

  2. sknut - Dec 6, 2011 at 8:08 PM

    They have opened up a bit more, but they are still responsible on the back end. Koivu does all the little things well and is fun to watch. It would be nice if he shot the puck a little more, sometimes he gives it up too fast.

  3. gbiscottagecheesefatties - Dec 6, 2011 at 10:16 PM

    They have opened up a lot more but the issue is, we still don’t have high end scoring on this team… but we do have players that contribute in 2 way hockey and this is a skilled team, just not skilled in the highlight real. Great two way play from the centers and wings have added more speed this year than ever… the young D-core is playing Yeo’s system very, very well and out goaltending speaks for itself. Go Wild.

    Tough game for Minny tonight against the Sharks. Hopefully they can get them back and Seto or Heater can light the lamp

    • docktorellis - Dec 7, 2011 at 12:05 AM

      I agree about the Wild. To me it’s almost like watching baseball, though, a sport I love dearly. The quote about baseball being “It’s kinda boring until it’s not.” The Wild are fun to watch on their aggressive forecheck, have had some exciting short-handed goals as a result of not lying back on the PK, and play a system that IMO is a far cry from the old Lemaire trap that was so rightly maligned for its yawn-inducing entertainment value. Watching Yeo’s system is MUCH more aggressive than many of those neutral-zone traps, relying on a smart aggression that I for one have loved to watch. It’s the reason guys like Clutterbuck have thrived under Yeo as well, and I welcome it (and FIRST PLACE) with open arms.

  4. grbull - Dec 7, 2011 at 2:02 AM

    No fans? But yet have managed one of the by far better attendance levels in the league since their inception…and for a MN sports fan, they sure as s$&@ are fun to watch continue to pile on the wins

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