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Wild pull off ‘huge’ series win for organization

May 1, 2014, 1:40 AM EDT

Colorado Avalanche v Minnesota Wild - Game Six Colorado Avalanche v Minnesota Wild - Game Six

The Minnesota Wild made a statement when they signed Zach Parise and Ryan Suter to matching 13-year, $98 million contracts. Mediocrity wasn’t satisfying and respectable wasn’t adequate. They hadn’t made the playoffs since 2008 or won a postseason series since 2003 when the duo joined the Wild, but with that move, the franchise loudly declared their Stanley Cup aspirations.

Their first season was a step forward in the sense that they did advance to the playoffs, but being swiftly eliminated in five games by Chicago made the campaign disappointing by the elevated standards they set for themselves. It looked like this season might not turn out any better though. Minnesota ran into injury problems and ended up settling for a Wild Card spot.

That’s moot though as they eliminated the Avalanche in Game 7 tonight.

“It’s huge,” Wild captain Mikko Koivu said of their victory, per the Pioneer Press’ Chad Graff. “Not just for the organization, but for the fans.”

“Especially on the road, it’s not easy when the home team gets the momentum, but the whole series was back-and-forth hockey. It went up and down,” Koivu added, according to the Denver Post.

The Wild have only ever gotten this far one other time in their franchise’s history, but if they want to keep going, they’ll have to exact revenge on an intimidating foe. They will face the Blackhawks again and they’re just as strong a team this time around.

  1. vstar1us - May 1, 2014 at 1:47 AM

    Sweet, just sweet !

    • clarke16 - May 1, 2014 at 5:48 PM

      From official NHL rulebook:

      if “an attacking player makes incidental contact with the goalkeeper at the same time a goal is scored” while the goalie is in the crease, the goal is disallowed.

      The best part is the Wild played most of this series 5 on 9 is STILL won. Must have been a pretty big dog who had $$$ on the Avs… ;)

  2. lordfletcher - May 1, 2014 at 1:48 AM

    And rivalry born

    Love playoff hockey.

    • ffrey3660 - May 1, 2014 at 12:55 PM

      I guess U were born yesterday. These 2 team have been rival’s since Roy got knocked into retirement by Bruno. They were rival’s in the old NW division remember.

  3. guitarisgood4u - May 1, 2014 at 1:55 AM

    We’ve got a little score to settle with the Hawks.

    • slickvb82 - May 1, 2014 at 1:59 AM

      yes we do!

      • lordfletcher - May 1, 2014 at 8:06 AM

        unfinished business

        We’re comin!!!!

    • hawkscup2013 - May 1, 2014 at 8:19 AM

      Blackhawks in 5

      • pastabelly - May 1, 2014 at 11:21 AM

        I think you wouldn’t get so many thumbs down had you posted this on a Blackhawks thread. Not so nice pooping on the Wild fans corn flakes. However, the Blackhawks would have to be the favorite now coming out of the West.

      • entitymn - May 1, 2014 at 12:23 PM

        Yes, we remember last year, too.

    • bluelinemh - May 1, 2014 at 9:57 AM

      While you Wild fans who are all pumped up, the Hawks just hit their form too and have been resting and studying up on everything they need to know, so watch out

      • tved12 - May 1, 2014 at 1:23 PM

        Great so we should get a really good series. I’d say the Wild have hit their stride as well and won the season series against the Hawks, looking very good doing it, so watch out.

      • bluelinemh - May 1, 2014 at 1:53 PM

        I agree the wild look great, but I also think (don’t kill me for stating my opinion) that the Avs overlooked the Wild and just never played to their full potential and then just lost control of the series.

        the refs did sort of play a part in one or two of the games that wouldve gone the wild’s way if the right calls were made, just saying, but thats a whole different arguement

      • tved12 - May 1, 2014 at 5:43 PM

        I couldn’t disagree more that the Avs overlooked the Wild. They got a few gifts from the refs and still couldn’t pull it out. And nobody is overlooked in games 6 and 7. The Wild played better in 6 of the 7 games this series, not just a few lucky goals here and there.

        People also don’t give the Wild enough credit for their style of play. Yeo has them playing very well defensively, they give up very few shots and when they do it’s typically not from good angles. They take lanes away constantly, their only real weakness defensively is on line rushes. Why do you think they’ve been able to go through 5 goalies and make them all look pretty good?

        Of course the Hawks are the favorite, I wouldn’t expect it to be any different. But I’m disappointed to see so many people picking them in 5. The Wild are playing much better than the Blues were so I wouldn’t be surprised if they won the series, much less took it to 6 or 7 games.

      • toptitty - May 1, 2014 at 5:52 PM

        the wild dominated the avs for every game but the second in the series if you think the avs overlooked us than you don’t know what ur talking about

      • mp1131211 - May 1, 2014 at 6:21 PM

        because rest is great for teams when they hit their form…

      • mp1131211 - May 1, 2014 at 6:24 PM

        blueline… they never lost control of the series until the last breakaway that ended the overtime in the last game of the series. So, basically, no.

  4. strictlythedanks - May 1, 2014 at 2:08 AM

    SUCK IT, AVSCUP.

    Rest of the avs fan, hats off to you. heck of a series.

    Bring on the blackkocks

    • toptitty - May 1, 2014 at 5:54 PM

      agree suck it avscup u r ignorant

  5. 950003cups - May 1, 2014 at 2:11 AM

    Hawks vs Bryzgalov? You better hope Darcey is ok.

  6. guitarisgood4u - May 1, 2014 at 2:59 AM

    How about Heater tonight?
    3 points, +3, 2 hits.

    Good night to have worn the 50 in ’07 shirt.

    • lbeezyse - May 1, 2014 at 9:58 AM

      I thought Heater was going to be a liability out there as well, but he played a hell of a game the past 3 games. Maybe he was saving himself for the playoffs this year? He is one of the big bodies we will need if we think we are beating the Hawks.

      • JB (the original) - May 1, 2014 at 7:19 PM

        As an upcoming FA, perhaps playing for a contract next year….?

    • getadealdonealready - May 1, 2014 at 1:23 PM

      Agree on Heater, I’ll be the first to say that I haven’t been a Heatley fan for the majority of the year, looked as if his better days were LONG gone. However you have to give him credit for how he handled being a healthy scratch, and was ready when his number was called. He played extremely well this series, and I hope he has a little more left in the tank. Happy for both he and Brodziak to overcome adversity and play well.

  7. mp1131211 - May 1, 2014 at 4:35 AM

    Ryan – Who expressed disappointment in last year’s results? And were they a Jersey fan or a Predator fan? Because if they were, that’s called jealousy, not disappointment.

    The wild dis great last year. Better this year. And everything is EXACTLY as fletch has penned.

  8. mp1131211 - May 1, 2014 at 4:38 AM

    Darcy is not OK (gut feeling). He looked really bad going off the ice and has already had concussion issues.

  9. hawkscup2013 - May 1, 2014 at 8:17 AM

    Cute story, Blackhawks in 5

    • lbeezyse - May 1, 2014 at 10:03 AM

      Sounds like all the analysts and Avs fans prior to the Wild series. This is a better Wild team this year that played the Hawks tough all year. 5-3 win, 4-3 win, 2-1 win, & a 3-2 shootout loss. These guys have proved to be a resilient bunch & I don’t expect them to be steamrolled by the Hawks, so take your trash talk elsewhere.

    • purpleguy - May 1, 2014 at 11:08 AM

      So the Hawks trolls didn’t take long huh? Must be crabby from watching the Bulls.

      • comeonnowguys - May 1, 2014 at 11:42 AM

        Yes, and the Timberwolves were amazing this year. Just like every year.

      • toptitty - May 1, 2014 at 5:56 PM

        basketball is not a sport for the state of hockey it is something to do when there is no hockey on

  10. hawkscup2013 - May 1, 2014 at 8:19 AM

    This is like a 2nd round Bye for Chicago
    Blackhawks in 5

    • slickvb82 - May 1, 2014 at 9:27 AM

      I can already tell, you’re going to be the equivalent to that douchebag Avscup in Colorado. Just remember, we went 3-1-1 in the reg season homeboy. Bring it! Go wild!

      • comeonnowguys - May 1, 2014 at 11:43 AM

        Yes, and St. Louis went 3-2 against the Hawks.

      • r8rbhawk - May 1, 2014 at 11:51 AM

        I’m pretty sure Hawkscup is Avscup alter ego

    • getadealdonealready - May 1, 2014 at 10:00 AM

      I love the arrogance and over-confidence, I only hope your team shares the same attitude!

      • lbeezyse - May 1, 2014 at 10:04 AM

        What a fool. Don’t feed the troll boys.

      • parasolmonster - May 1, 2014 at 11:27 AM

        Ignore hawkscup – neither the team nor any smart fans think this series will be anything but a challenge.

    • toptitty - May 1, 2014 at 5:58 PM

      just as big of a douchebag hawkscup avscup

    • [my_team_name]cup[year_they_didnt_suck] - May 1, 2014 at 6:36 PM

      We will own you!

  11. blackhawks2010 - May 1, 2014 at 8:41 AM

    The Madhouse awaits, Go Hawks!

  12. 2dalake - May 1, 2014 at 9:18 AM

    Ahh the arrogance of Blackhawks fans. Can’t wait for this series?

  13. greej1938l - May 1, 2014 at 9:20 AM

    Hawks fans or the so called hawks fans are all a bunch of weenies

  14. independentsparty - May 1, 2014 at 9:25 AM

    No one caught that the author stated that the Wild picked up Suter and Parise in ’03? haha

    • dschrode2013 - May 1, 2014 at 2:53 PM

      Actually, it’s just not a well written sentence. It is meant to read like this:
      The Wild hadn’t made the playoffs since 2008 or won a playoff series since 2003 when the two joined the team(in 2012)…..

      • independentsparty - May 1, 2014 at 2:55 PM

        Haha, that was my first thought. The editorial budget must be slim.

  15. earpaniac - May 1, 2014 at 9:30 AM

    They are better than last year, which is good for Hawk fans, better hockey. I just don’t think they’re as good as the Hawks. Hawks in 6, 5 if Keumper is hurt. Congrats though Wild, I don’t think many had you winning rd 1!

    • purpleguy - May 1, 2014 at 11:11 AM

      The problem the Wild face is that the Hawks defensemen are light years better than the Avs defensemen. Heck, I think the only Avs defenseman that could beat out a Hawks defenseman is Johnson.

      • r8rbhawk - May 1, 2014 at 11:53 AM

        As long as Cooke doesn’t take out Keith or Seabs, we’ll be fine

      • tved12 - May 1, 2014 at 1:27 PM

        r8rbhawk,

        As long as Seabrook doesn’t take out Koivu or Granlund, we’ll be fine.

  16. getadealdonealready - May 1, 2014 at 9:58 AM

    Hoping for another great series, funny to see Hawks fans so confident. They think they are getting the same team they beat last year. While this team can’t seem to have any luck keeping a goalie healthy, whoever we put in net seems to do pretty well with the style the team plays. This is a different team then last year, and is still not at it’s peak the next 3-5 years are going to be good ones to be WILD fans.

    GO WiLD!

    • lbeezyse - May 1, 2014 at 10:11 AM

      It is the same team, but…. Add a healthy Pommer, Granlund, Haula, Moulson, McCormick, Nino, and Fontaine, & exit Cullen, the Guch, PMB, Gilbert, Clutterbuck, Mitchell, Falk, Konopka, Dowell. This is a lot deeper Wild team with better defensive and scoring ability. That was evident by the amount of points our 3rd and 4th lines put up. We beat the very talented, well coached Aves with a cold Pommer and Moulson. The Wild need those two to step up if they want to win. To the Hawks fans and bandwagon trolls, this is not going to be the cake walk you think it is.

      • lbeezyse - May 1, 2014 at 10:44 AM

        Ohhh and swap Rupp for Cooke. #freeMattCooke.

      • ffrey3660 - May 1, 2014 at 1:10 PM

        The same team? Ur post shows 9 different players skating and different goalie’s how is that the same? Oh Ur speaking about the Yoe Yoe coach. Hope he can get the job done and keep this series tight like the last.

      • clarke16 - May 1, 2014 at 2:58 PM

        Very well said…

  17. Carl Gerbschmidt - May 1, 2014 at 11:54 AM

    It’s. Time. To. Play. Hockey.

  18. zraskovich - May 1, 2014 at 12:34 PM

    Cooke’s out on parole in 3 :)

    • 12is3times4 - May 1, 2014 at 4:04 PM

      The Wild got the last 3 of their 4 wins without Cooke in the lineup. If they’re at least holding their own through the first three games of the Chicago series, I’d be a little surprised if Cooke returns right away, if at all. Why mess with a good thing?

      It all just points up the idiocy of Cooke’s dirty move in Game 3 of the Colorado series. If the Wild had lost that series, he would likely have gotten much of the blame for it. As it is, he’s just shown himself to be expendable.

  19. 1wildfan1 - May 1, 2014 at 12:48 PM

    Dang, starting to see many Hawks fans rivaling Philly fans and Avs fans in douchebaggery. Nicely done

  20. earpaniac - May 1, 2014 at 1:31 PM

    I know the Wild aren’t the same team as last year, they’re better. Much better. But I still don’t think they’re anywhere close to as good as the Hawks. If they get they’re goaltending straightened out, and one more top line scorer, Vanek?, this will be a great rivalry in the coming years. But not this year. Can the Wild win? Of course they can. But you’d have to agree, it would be an upset that’d make the 1st rd one look like nothing.

  21. unfortunateminnesotasportsfan - May 1, 2014 at 2:06 PM

    why do they let uninformed writers write articles when their facts are wrong? Pretty sure wild made they playoffs last year. and NOT their 1st since 2008.. in fact i believe it was the chicago blackhawks.. lets hope its a different result. lol

    • dschrode2013 - May 1, 2014 at 2:54 PM

      Actually, it’s just not a well written sentence. It is meant to read like this:
      The Wild hadn’t made the playoffs since 2008 or won a playoff series since 2003 when the two joined the team(in 2012)…..

    • Jackson Scofield - May 1, 2014 at 2:57 PM

      “when the duo joined the team”

  22. kurb21 - May 1, 2014 at 3:19 PM

    I went to two games at the Pepsi Center and the atmosphere was incredible. The young team we had was incredible, but even the most casual hockey fan knew that the Wild were outplaying the Avs 75% of the time. If not for two goals when pulling the goalie, this would not have been a close series. That said, the Avs played well enough to win in game 7, but when you have a goalie who is supposed to be a Vezina finalist receive 4 leads in a game – he has to hold on to it. He is the biggest reason for the Avs resurgence this year, so it can be forgiven, but it is still disheartening to see him give up two “soft” goals.

    The resurgence of the Avs has been great here in Denver and it is clear the NHL hockey is finally starting to take hold again nationally after a series of work stoppages over the years.

    The Wild have an impressive team with some great role players and two clear stars. Minn. definitely deserves to have a top level hockey team and I think they have one. This should be a war against Chicago. It has been fun reading all the trash talking this series, but ultimately the Wild fans won this round.

  23. jpat2424 - May 1, 2014 at 3:43 PM

    Hawks in 6

  24. toptitty - May 1, 2014 at 6:07 PM

    Wild in 6

  25. seals1 - May 1, 2014 at 6:25 PM

    Let’s just hope some whale in vegas does not have the hawks like he did the avs.

    I like it that these hawk fans think it’s going to be easy in 5. I heard the same thing from a work contact today that watches bulls all year now he is the biggest hawk fan of them all. Please, he had to ask me what team gets home ice advantage.

    Hawks in 5,,,,,,,,,,,,that is where we want them. Go Wild.

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