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Sounds like a Parise-Koivu-Heatley top line in Minnesota

Jul 9, 2012, 2:19 PM EDT

Zach Parise AP

You couldn’t blame Mike Yeo for smiling so much on Monday.

At the introductory presser for Zach Parise and Ryan Suter, the Minnesota Wild head coach was asked what plans he had for his two newest players.

The question elicited a big grin.

“I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about it already — that’s the fun part of the job,” Yeo explained. “We’ve all come in for this rookie camp and it’s the first time the coaches have been in the same room.

“We’ve all started drawing up our line combos and power play setups. There’s a lot of time between now and training camp, but the excitement and ideas of what you can do with these two guys in the lineup is there.”

The most obvious plan was to get Parise on a line with All-Star center and team captain Mikko Koivu — something Parise mentioned in today’s presser.

“[Koivu’s] arguably one of the best two-way centers in the game. I always thought that he and I would play well together. No dropping hints or anything,” Parise said, laughing. “He’s a type of player I would play well with. I think we play a similar north-south hard game.”

Yeo later told Mike Russo of the Star-Tribune that, if camp started tomorrow, Parise would indeed be on a line with Koivu and Dany Heatley.

In the same context — if training camp started tomorrow — Yeo said Suter would be paired with Jared Spurgeon, the 22-year-old rearguard that played in a career-high 70 games last year, leading all Wild defensemen in scoring with 23 point.

Spurgeon finished fifth among all Wild skaters in assists (20) and fourth in power play points, with 12, so it stands to reason he and Suter could see a lot of time together on the man advantage as well.

  1. kingfooj - Jul 9, 2012 at 2:28 PM


    • lostpuppysyndrome - Jul 9, 2012 at 3:19 PM

      That would make for a seriously tough 1st line. I just keep thinking about Koivu popping Kronwall with his shoulder last year as they raced for the puck. Add Parise to that kind of play and you’ll drive the other team crazy. Heater is also only 2 years removed from an 82 pt season, and I foresee a rebound season for him. He’s only 31 after all. Maybe even stick him with the SuperFinn and PMB, put Seto up front, and have 2 stellar lines. And who knows, maybe another prospect or two will have a good shot making it to the Show after this week.

      • greatminnesotasportsmind - Jul 10, 2012 at 12:04 AM

        The signings of Parise/Suter means only Granlund will make the team this year. All of the other prospects will be in Houston. Until injuries happen then the Coyles, Zuckers, Bulmers, etc will be called up. They are at least better than Jed Ortmeyer.

      • lostpuppysyndrome - Jul 10, 2012 at 9:20 AM

        I figured as much but who knows? Either way, the Aeros are gonna look good this year too. I like that Connelly pickup. That oughta help the Aeros a bit.

  2. letangusespertplus - Jul 9, 2012 at 2:32 PM

    Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz these kids aren’t thick enough.

  3. sergeikremlin - Jul 9, 2012 at 3:25 PM

    Sounds like a one-line team to me. I’d like to see Parise playing with the kid, Granlund.

    • greatminnesotasportsmind - Jul 9, 2012 at 3:38 PM

      Bouchard, Granlund, and Setoguchi isn’t a bad second line either.

      Brodziak, Cullen, and Clutterbuck is a decent 3rd line as well. Brodziak scored 20 goals last year, Cullen at this point makes a decent 3rd line center.

    • thraiderskin - Jul 9, 2012 at 3:52 PM

      Perhaps, but we didn’t have jack before, now we have 1 great line, pardon our excitement.

  4. mclovinhockey - Jul 9, 2012 at 4:02 PM

    solid first line… 2nd and 3rd are okay lines… the wild, if healthy could compete for the playoffs

    • lordfletcher - Jul 9, 2012 at 5:42 PM

      you mean will compete, and COULD compete for the division.

      • atwatercrushesokoye - Jul 9, 2012 at 11:31 PM

        Time to pump the brakes there Fletch, the Wild are nowhere near as good as Vancouver right now, maybe in a few years but not right now, so I’d hold off on the Division championship banners right now.

        Again the Wild are no more talented than the Flames and I would argue the Flames have a much deeper roster than Minnesota lines 1-4 plus D and probably have the edge in goal as well (only counting starters, Minny has a much much better backup than Calgary does) although again I will admit as a Calgary fan I’m biased so I’ll just say they’re probably equal talent wise.

        Now with all that being said the Wild were 9 points back of Calgary and 14 points out of a playoff spot, signing Parise and Suter help the Wild but do they really make the Wild 14 points better? And yes I know they have some talented youth coming up, but Edmonton has better youth and they finished dead last so counting on those players is a little premature.

      • greatminnesotasportsmind - Jul 10, 2012 at 12:09 AM

        Minnesota is every bit as close as Vancouver now. Espically since they will be dealing Luongo presumably before the season starts. Schneider is good, but hasn’t had a full season to show he is the THE GUY.

        It’s gonna be closer than you think.

        Let’s see how Calgary does when Bouwmeester gets dealt.

      • atwatercrushesokoye - Jul 10, 2012 at 12:29 AM

        Bouwmeester might not be going anywhere, that’s a huge hole (26 minutes a game) if they trade him and that would certainly hurt them.

        We’ll have to agree to disagree on Vancouver, as much as I hate them they’re easily the class of the NW division right now unless Schnemider is a complete stiff. They finished 21 and 30. Points respectively ahead of our teams last year, even with the hits they took that’s a lot of ground to make up in one offseason, I think it’ll be the year after this next one that they eventually get caught by someone.

      • nvandy42 - Jul 10, 2012 at 12:33 AM

        If you think Calgary’s team is as talented as the Wild’s then I want some of what you’re smoking…..

      • atwatercrushesokoye - Jul 10, 2012 at 12:43 AM

        They absolutely are, the roster all the way through is better than Minnesota’s, top 2 lines are comparable, Calgary’s 3rd and 4th line are better than Minnesota’s. Defensively the Flames are deeper (although much older) than the Wild. We’ve also got our own top flight rookie this year, the only difference is ours has actually played some NHL games and scored multiple NHL goals.

  5. GenoPringles - Jul 9, 2012 at 4:05 PM

    Pretty sure Malkins line is pretty much set. The real question is who is gonna be the lucky one to play with The Soupcan and Super Duper? It will probably come down to survival of the Thickest. Time will tell

    • greatminnesotasportsmind - Jul 9, 2012 at 6:45 PM

      Well we know Parise to come here than play with concussion boy

    • atwatercrushesokoye - Jul 9, 2012 at 11:25 PM

      So who plays on the Pens line in week 2 after Likes it in his can gets yet another concussion?

  6. mnskolvikes - Jul 10, 2012 at 10:30 AM

    2012-13 Standings:


    • lostpuppysyndrome - Jul 10, 2012 at 4:22 PM

      I love the Wild as much as most fans, but I’ll admit that’s a bit far-fetched for the 12-13 season. Not out of the realm of possibility but not likely. Still, has the Wild at 20:1 odds of winning the Cup vs 60:1 odds for Edmonton and Colorado, and 100:1 odds for Calgary. Thoughts, atwatercrushesokoye?

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