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Wild coach furious after losing to Blackhawks

Jan 13, 2012, 11:48 AM EDT

Mike Yeo AP

A month ago, Mike Yeo was the leading contender for coach of the year.

Today, he’s…um…not.

The Wild suffered its 12th loss in its last 14 games Thursday night in Chicago, a stretch that’s seen Minnesota fall from first in the league to eighth in the Western Conference, just one point clear of ninth-place Dallas…which has two games in hand.

“Everything we needed to do to win this game, we didn’t do,” Yeo said after losing 5-2 to the Blackhawks, as per the StarTribune. “We have to play the right way, and we have to have everybody. And tonight, we didn’t even come close to playing the right way, and we didn’t come close to having everybody.”

Forward Devin Setoguchi agreed his team didn’t play the system “the way we’re supposed to play.”

Translation: the Wild didn’t work hard enough. Because at the end of the day, that’s what Yeo’s system entails. Its goal is to take time and space away from the opponent, pressuring the puck while staying structured. Not pretty and not fun to play, but effective when everyone’s on board.

Over at Sports Club Stats, here’s what the Wild’s chances to make the playoffs throughout the season look like in chart form:


Even RIM thinks that’s a steep decline.

  1. sknut - Jan 13, 2012 at 11:56 AM

    The goals that made it from 1-1 to 4-1 were a complete joke, its time for a shakeup on the blue line as Zanon and Stoner can’t get out of their own way. I like Yeo and think this is on execution rather than coaching. Hopefully Fletcher can make a trade soon to add some scoring otherwise its going to be a long second half.

    • gbiscottagecheesefatties - Jan 13, 2012 at 12:49 PM

      Our Defense has gone to hell, I agree but it’s only a certain few who have lost all ablitity to play their position. Zanon, Schultz has been brutal, Zidlicky has come around a bit and Stoner is well okay but we need his size… We don’t have a top pair D-line or a NHL scoring like either… this team was going to have to be very healthy and battle game in and game out to make it to the playoff’s, now it looks like neither is happening. I don’t blame Yeo at all or really that many of our skaters except a few, I blame Doug Risebrough for bad drafting and leaving this team with huge holes… I will say that next year will really be the first year where you can start to see what Fletcher has done with the prospects coming in and trades growing in our system… it won’t be a one year turnaround (this year), the Wild and GM Fletcher need to stay the course and build thru the draft. Do not trade Coyle, Zucker, Granlund, Brodin… we can trade, Z.Phillips, Harding, Backstrom (impossible to move due to his NTC and salary), any one on our defensive zone…. The Wild will push hard to get Parise in the offseason but they won’t over pay so likely we won’t land him…

  2. bigtganks - Jan 13, 2012 at 12:08 PM

    I’m thinking Yeo thinks this team is the team that started out of the gate to first in the NHL in the first quarter of the season and not the team that is playing awful lately.

    Unfortunately, I’m thinking this team is the team we’re seeing now. They’re the Buffalo Bills of this year’s NHL. Hot start, everyone thinks they’re for real, and, … they’re not.

  3. bigtganks - Jan 13, 2012 at 12:31 PM

    Oh how things change in five weeks.

    Sports Club Stats said it was a 97.3% chance five weeks ago. Now you’d have to think it’s less than 50/50, right?

  4. treydogg97 - Jan 13, 2012 at 9:49 PM

    Zanon has also now decided not to talk after games about his piss poor play. Kind of a douchebag move to me, didn’t really expect that from him. The Wild are not going to see the fruits of their drafts for another couple years. Hopefully Granlund comes over and lights it up, but that’s tough to ask for from a rookie. I’d say unless they can swing a trade for a legit scorer then let the prospects develop and bring ’em in. Hopefully they can move Harding and get a bag of pucks for Zanon.

  5. wildfan34 - Jan 14, 2012 at 11:04 AM

    I totally agree with Zanon. since he’s come back from injury he has not played well. I am more disappointed with Zidlicky. I know he has gone through some injuries too but he just does not look like he is giving his all. Poor puck handling and zero goals through half the season. I also agree we need Stoner’s size and toughness though he hasn’t played well either.
    I don’t think it is fair to say that we wouldn’t be in this position if Latendresse and PMB were healthy. PMB has played most of the season and in most games during this losing stretch. And though Latendresse is a big offensive player, he wouldn’t be the savior. There have been some man games lost with Setaguchi out and Koivu also but a good NHL team must overcome adversity with one or two good players out of the lineup.

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