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-   -   Speculation: Can the Wild win in the playoffs with their current roster? (http://hfboards.hockeysfuture.com/showthread.php?t=1378253)

Marcolepsy Scandella 03-17-2013 12:28 PM

Can the Wild win in the playoffs with their current roster?
 
I was watching the NHL network this morning and there was the story of the Kings' run to the cup last year. Watching that made me wonder if the Wild could make a run like that given the current roster. The biggest concern that I have looking at the roster is quite honestly the goalie position.

The Kings won the cup last year largely because of Jon Quick stealing a game every now and then. I don't see Niklas Backstrom as being able to do that. You have to be consistent in the playoffs and although Backstrom has been really good lately it seems like he'll have one great game and then two nights later he can look absolutely lost. In the playoffs that's how you can lose really fast. And with Harding sidelined for who knows how long we're left with two young, unproven goalies as options for Backstrom's backup. I'm just not sure we can make a deep run with that situation.

I feel pretty good about the forward situation. For the first time in years we actually have depth and we're arguing about whether to put in Zucker when he's healthy or keep PMB in because he is on fire right now. I love the depth and the options we have up front, all the lines are contributing now.

On defense, we have a guy who might win the Norris this year if he keeps going at this pace in Suter. And his d partner is going to be a Norris contender for years to come it appears. I don't feel great about our depth however. I cringe every time Stoner and/or Falk is on the ice. Spurgeon can be brilliant or just as bad as the other two. Gilbert is a solid #3 but he needs a better partner in my opinion. I am interested to see what Clark brings whenever he gets in because I still think our depth on D is a huge issue and could be especially exposed in the playoffs.

Your guys' thoughts on the current roster and how it would fair in the playoffs and what you think needs to be added or changed to make it better?

The Apt 03-17-2013 12:32 PM

The second I read your thread, goalie instantly came to mind. Backs will need some help whether that's Harding or one of the two rookies. I don't see Backs pulling it off on his own. It would have to be a tag team type of thing.

I am actually quite comfortable with our other players and positions. This team gets hot with this core and we could be very dangerous. Like some analyst said the other night, NO ONE wants to play the Wild when they're hot. If we can get hot in the playoffs and our goalie situation is secure, I do think we could go on a run. Why not? The depth's there on offense in a way that it hasn't been for, like, ever.

llamapalooza 03-17-2013 12:38 PM

Obligatory:


IHaveNoCreativity 03-17-2013 12:40 PM

No, goaltending isn't strong enough.

Marcolepsy Scandella 03-17-2013 12:40 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Sportserie (Post 61835871)
The second I read your thread, goalie instantly came to mind. Backs will need some help whether that's Harding or one of the two rookies. I don't see Backs pulling it off on his own. It would have to be a tag team type of thing.

I am actually quite comfortable with our other players and positions. This team gets hot with this core and we could be very dangerous. Like some analyst said the other night, NO ONE wants to play the Wild when they're hot. If we can get hot in the playoffs and our goalie situation is secure, I do think we could go on a run. Why not? The depth's there on offense in a way that it hasn't been for, like, ever.

Yeah, while the jury is still out on the defense for me, I absolutely love the forward depth right now and the defense has been playing well enough for me to be satisfied.. Although I do still see the occasional play that make me just shake my head. The goalie situation is by far my biggest concern. If we get to the playoffs and I have to see Backstrom flopping all over the crease I'm going to lose my mind.

WildisLaw 03-17-2013 12:51 PM

Absolutely. Backs when 100% focused and on his game is an outstanding goalie. We have great lines now. Every line can score. Brodz was a beast last night, when the secondary scoring is rolling we can beat anyone. If anything, my concern would be defense outside of our top pairing not Backs.

Piffles 03-17-2013 12:53 PM

Yes.

Next question?

Jarick 03-17-2013 01:00 PM

I think they need another top four defenseman and one more legit top six forward. I like Coyle, but I think they need a better player up there. And we also have two very streaky guys in Cullen and Seto. With everyone going they can win, but we saw some bad play earlier.

GMAN23 03-17-2013 01:00 PM

Ummmmm, I remember everyone saying the Wild would be a tough team to play in the playoffs last season when we were in first in the west. IMO this roster is much stronger. So yes.

Haite 03-17-2013 01:04 PM

I want to watch through the regular season first and not worry about playoffs until we even make there.

Jarick 03-17-2013 01:21 PM

Goalies are almost never rotated in the playoffs, at least by good teams that win.

Only real exceptions are Minnesota in 2003, Anaheim in 2007 (swapped goalies in the first round, Giguere was coming back from injury), and Edmonton in 2006 (Roli got hurt).

Marcolepsy Scandella 03-17-2013 01:26 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jarick (Post 61839107)
Goalies are almost never rotated in the playoffs, at least by good teams that win.

Only real exceptions are Minnesota in 2003, Anaheim in 2007 (swapped goalies in the first round, Giguere was coming back from injury), and Edmonton in 2006 (Roli got hurt).

Interesting that all 3 of those teams made deep runs though.

DeuceMN 03-17-2013 01:33 PM

I agree with Jarick that we need 1 more true top 4 d and 1 more top 6 (prefer top 3) winger.

Coyle is not ready. He's gotten a little better, but he's still a ways out from being able to produce at the level that is needed from him, playing the role he is in.

Gilbert needs an overall better partner. Maybe Clark is the guy, but I doubt it. He seems more like an upgrade in the 5/6 spot.

Our pp needs to be fixed before we can even consider being playoff contenders. Those are opportunities that must be taken advantage of, and quite frankly, our pp sucks, and will only continue to suck even more when the energy level ramps up in the playoffs.

Eagle Claw 03-17-2013 01:36 PM

I think wild signed brett "cannon fodder" clark for a reason and thats playoffs
To stop shots and get a veteran in the lineup if falk stoner or some other D would start to falter ,that means wild kind off thinks they are strongly heading for playoffs

Yeo NEEDS to start resting Bäcks, yesterday was horrendous it was crazy bäcks had to vision the puck in duplicate!! thats how bad he was for 2 periods

Have to agree that wild goal tending is not good enough for a playoff run unless YEO starts to sincerely try either young goalie

Russo needs to put more pressure on Yeo to take the next step with these guys
a good enough team means nothing if your goalie is physically or mentally dead

Emilie 03-17-2013 01:36 PM

Could they win games in the playoffs? Yes.

Could they make a deep run at the cup? No.

If they continue playing like they played against the avs when playing against you know, good teams...that could change. There will always be weak links on the team, but right now the Wild are too hot and cold. Play a few games looking really good, and than play a game or two where they look like peewees.

DeuceMN 03-17-2013 02:01 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Emilie (Post 61840073)
Could they win games in the playoffs? Yes.

Could they make a deep run at the cup? No.

If they continue playing like they played against the avs when playing against you know, good teams...that could change. There will always be weak links on the team, but right now the Wild are too hot and cold. Play a few games looking really good, and than play a game or two where they look like peewees.

I agree with this.

We need to find a consistent game, and bring it against good teams.

We also need to stay consistent against bad teams. The Avs should not have had three goals in the last game. We gave them the second period, and cannot be doing that. Our guys just stop trying too often, still. It is better, but they have a ways to go.

DANOZ28 03-17-2013 02:03 PM

if you make the playoffs anything is possible but you need a hot goalie. i think we lack chemistry (just need time) & our PP must get ALOT better. i do think we should make the playoffs , i dont think we're ready for a deep run. ps the kings were getting better each year for about 3 years so i dont think this is an equal or fair comparison to the wild.

BagHead 03-17-2013 02:11 PM

When it comes to our goalie, you guys are crazy. Backstrom is just about the most consistent goalie in the entire league. Don't believe me? Look at all the starting goalie's game logs. No, he isn't a game stealing goalie, he isn't the sexy choice, but he is the safe choice. I feel confident that Backstrom is a great goalie to go to the playoffs with (not that we'd know) and won't be an issue once we're there. As long as our forwards keep scoring, we're good on the back end.

As the OP pointed out, our defense is the issue. It's top heavy, and the bottom part is frightening. I'm curious to see what Brett Clark can do. He's getting old for a hockey player, but he's got a lot of experience, and I remember him being pretty good on the Avs. I'm hoping that that's the player we're getting.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jarick (Post 61839107)
Goalies are almost never rotated in the playoffs, at least by good teams that win.

Only real exceptions are Minnesota in 2003, Anaheim in 2007 (swapped goalies in the first round, Giguere was coming back from injury), and Edmonton in 2006 (Roli got hurt).

Which is exactly when everything went to **** for Edmonton.
The Real Story.

Karl 03-17-2013 03:11 PM

I am not too comfortable talking playoffs there are still a lot of games to go and the Wild go on a 3- 5 game slump and they are outside the playoff picture looking in. But that being said, if the Wild continue to play like this I don't see why they couldn't make some noise in the playoffs.

Dampland 03-17-2013 04:15 PM

Can we wait until we actually finish in the top 8 before we start talking like this?

urho 03-17-2013 05:00 PM

You need more depth on D and maybe someone to replace Cullen as a 2nd line center. That'd get you somewhere.

rynryn 03-17-2013 05:15 PM

omg goalies are the least of our worries if we're in the playoffs.

Gaps 03-17-2013 05:20 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Emilie (Post 61840073)
Could they win games in the playoffs? Yes.

Could they make a deep run at the cup? No.

If they continue playing like they played against the avs when playing against you know, good teams...that could change. There will always be weak links on the team, but right now the Wild are too hot and cold. Play a few games looking really good, and than play a game or two where they look like peewees.

This pretty much. But can we please refrain from discussion like this until we actually make the playoffs?

roon 03-17-2013 06:06 PM

PMB is on fire? Am I the only one who still thinks he is garbage compared to Zucker?

Bookman 03-17-2013 06:28 PM

Since they've turned the corner they've taken on the best of the West and haven't played all that badly - they coulda shoulda beat Anaheim at least once, put scare into the Hawks after being the first team to beat them in OT, and they've looked good against the "Nucks the last 2 games.

They are not an easy team to play against.

If this team continues on their current trajectory, they can most certainly compete in the playoffs. A bit of puck luck here and there, who's to say?


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