Game Preview: Minnesota Wild vs. Dallas Stars 10/19/18 7:00PM CST at American Airlines Arena

Game Preview: Minnesota Wild vs. Dallas Stars 10/19/18 7:00PM CST at American Airlines Arena


Game Preview: Minnesota Wild vs. Dallas Stars 10/19/18 7:00PM CST at American Airlines Arena


Minnesota Wild (2-2-2)  6 pts  6th in the Central

2.33 Goals For Per Game (26th in NHL)

3.00 Goals Against Per Game (18th in NHL)

16.7% Power Play (21st in NHL)

80.8% Penalty Kill (13th in NHL)

Top 5 Scorers:

1. #11 Zach Parise ~ 1G 6A = 7pts

2. #16 Jason Zucker ~ 3G 2A = 5pts

3. #20 Ryan Suter ~ 1G 4A = 5pts

4. #12 Eric Staal ~ 2G 2A = 4pts

5. #64 Mikael Granlund ~ 2G 2A = 4pts

Top 3 PIM’s:

1. #15 Matt Hendricks ~ 7PIMs

2. #17 Marcus Foligno ~ 7PIMs

3. #23 J.T. Brown ~ 6PIMs

Top Goaltenders:

1. #40 Devan Dubnyk ~ (2-1-0)   2.32GAA   .940SV%

2. #32 Alex Stalock ~ (0-1-0)   3.11GAA   .889SV%






Dallas Stars (3-3-0)  6pts  5th in the Central

3.00 Goals For Per Game (20th in NHL)

3.00 Goals Against Per Game (15th in NHL)

38.9% Power Play (3rd in NHL)

77.8% Penalty Kill (17th in NHL)

Top 5 Scorers:

1. #47 Alexander Radulov ~ 4G 6A = 10pts

2. #91 Tyler Seguin ~ 3G 7A = 10pts

3. #14 Jamie Benn ~ 4G 4A = 8pts

4. #3 John Klingberg ~ 4G 2A = 6pts

5. #5 Connor Carrick ~ 1G 3A = 4pts

Top 3 PIM’s:

1. #25 Brett Ritchie ~ 9PIMs

2. #14 Jamie Benn ~ 9PIMs

3. #47 Alexander Radulov ~ 6PIMs

Top Goaltenders:

1. #30 Ben Bishop ~ (2-2-0)   2.56GAA   .913SV%   1SO

2. #35 Anton Khudobin ~ (1-1-0)   3.02GAA   .898SV%


Dallas Stars

Benn – Seguin – Radulov

Shore – Spezza – Pitlick

Janmark – Faksa – Comeau

Dickinson – Hintz – Ritchie

Lindell – Klingberg

Methot – Heiskanen

Polak – Honka



Minnesota Wild

Zucker – Staal – Read

Parise – Koivu – Granlund

Niederreiter – Coyle – Greenway

Prosser – Fehr – Brown

Suter – Dumba

Brodin – Spurgeon

Seeler – Pateryn




There are times when it’s really hard to enjoy things you really love. Right now, I love my job but due to some questionable internet service here at my home, it’s hard to do my job (I work from home). I also really, really love music. There are few genres that I don’t like. I can appreciate their place in the musical world, but I don’t enjoy them. What many of you reading this might not know, is that I earned my undergraduate degree in oboe performance (although I started playing the violin at age three and a half). I loved performing. I loved learning new music. But, I really hated the practicing that was needed to get me to the performance time. When you’re practicing, you’re often hyper-focused on small snippets of the piece. It could be something with the articulation or the finger combinations or the speed of the piece that makes it difficult. Heck, anyone who has played the oboe knows you start out on a really crappy student model of instrument. They don’t have all of the keys that the professional model I purchased in late high school has. When you get that professional model, it almost feels like starting over, because now you have keys to use for alternate fingerings that make life so much easier, but you have to get used to them. One thing I really had to focus on was breath control, and it had nothing to do with running out of breath. It was expelling the breath I already had before taking another breath. It was a never ending battle, and I never figured out circular breathing. And then there was my true Waterloo, the aspect of being an oboist that made my life miserable. It was making reeds. Like I had time to do that as a full time college student, with work study jobs, and general practicing to get in. I had to sleep at some point. It’s that kind of stuff that would take the fun out of music. Don’t get me wrong, I think music education (or some form of artistic expression) is an important part of every person’s education. But keep it fun.

With that in mind, I also really love hockey. Yet, right now it is very, very hard to love the Minnesota Wild. I thought we’ve had some bad starts to the season in years past, but this season it’s as if this roster has sucked all of the enjoyment out of hockey. Don’t believe me? Re-watch the first period of every game played so far this season. What do you see? I see a tired, uninspired, overpaid team on the ice who doesn’t seem to realize they’re supposed to start from the opening puck drop. No, in their world right now, hockey is a 40 minute game, that even then they have a hard time winning. Heck, it makes me wonder how this team would play, if the entire game was one 20 minute period. Would there be a greater sense of urgency? Would there be more energy? Would we see the Mikko Koivu line more than anyone would want to? I mean, we see that line for most of the overtime sessions, so it would make sense if a game was only 20 minutes, if that line would get more icetime on a percentage level. I’m sure we’ll hear people comment “but the Wild have two wins, it’s not that bad.” Well, let’s look at those wins. A win against Chicago, who is not the power team they used to be but everyone seems to think they are (stop living in the past people) and a win against Arizona, which I shouldn’t even have to quantify with a reason to not be excited about.

But here comes a real challenge. Yes, I know the Dallas Stars have the same number of points as the Wild, but let’s look at the logistics of this game. First, this game is being played in Dallas. That right there might be reason enough to say “you know, I think I might skip watching this one.” Games at American Airlines Arena for the Minnesota Wild rarely go well. Secondly, as mentioned earlier, when you can’t even be bothered to show up for the first period, I expect the Wild to spot the Stars a goal or two during that period. And finally, we have a team that I don’t think has found their identity yet, and if they have, its lack of chemistry is going to be their downfall. No one really seems to be communicating like they should. The Wild have been known to make dumb passes, but this season it’s almost like they’re shouting out “hey, I’m going to pass the puck to where I think this person should be, but they’re not, so if you on the opposition want it, you can have it.” That’s honestly how crazy it feels. Nino Niederreiter and Charlie Coyle both look incredibly lost most nights, and those are two players that need to figure their sh*t out soon. Heck, they should have figured that out two seasons ago, yet we’re still waiting for them to figure things out. I should also point out, when scoring is an issue and you need to replace Joel Eriksson Ek (who has been put on injured reserve), the Wild chose to recall Matt Read from Iowa. Um, Read is the only regular player on the Iowa roster that has yet to register a point. Sure, let’s recall a player who isn’t scoring goals and at the very least isn’t even tallying the dreaded second assist. Yep, that’s going to help. The defense isn’t much better. As crazy as it sounds, the only time I really feel comfortable is when Nate Prosser is in the lineup (regardless if he’s playing defense or forward), because he knows his role and his positions, and does what he’s supposed to do.

I’m really hoping I’ll find some enjoyment again in this team. However, until that time, I may need to find my inner Zen, because until then this particular game is sure to raise my blood pressure through the roof.

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