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SchoolYourPool's 2010-11 Wild Team Preview

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09-24-2010, 11:14 PM
  #1
BC Ben
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SchoolYourPool's 2010-11 Wild Team Preview

Hey Wild fans...

SYP has sent our writer Balls Brunswick across the NHL landscape to provide team previews for the upcoming season - and upcoming it is!!

Well, Balls landed in Minnesota and produce THIS PREVIEW of your Wild team...

As a Canucks fan, Balls has many chances to see the boys in green play, and I believe he has given us a straight shot at this squad's chances this year... Has he done a good job? Feedback, comments and general praise welcome.

Enjoy your season, enjoy hockey!!

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09-24-2010, 11:41 PM
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rynryn
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BC Ben View Post
Hey Wild fans...

SYP has sent our writer Balls Brunswick across the NHL landscape to provide team previews for the upcoming season - and upcoming it is!!

Well, Balls landed in Minnesota and produce THIS PREVIEW of your Wild team...

As a Canucks fan, Balls has many chances to see the boys in green play, and I believe he has given us a straight shot at this squad's chances this year... Has he done a good job? Feedback, comments and general praise welcome.

Enjoy your season, enjoy hockey!!

it's very optimistic in my opinion. thanks!

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09-24-2010, 11:45 PM
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GopherState
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Won't lie, I had low expectations since not many people know a lot about Minnesota, but other than a couple line combos (which on their own are hard to predict) it's a fairly accurate portrayal of the Wild. Good job!

The one thing I would say though is Harding didn't re-injure his hip like it says on the sidebar. He injured his knee.

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09-24-2010, 11:48 PM
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rynryn
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if zidlicky is our top pairing defenseman i'm cheering for the oilers.

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09-24-2010, 11:52 PM
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if zidlicky is our top pairing defenseman i'm cheering for the oilers.
I think I need a new computer after spitting my pop all over it after reading this. That was hilarious.

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09-24-2010, 11:57 PM
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if zidlicky is our top pairing defenseman i'm cheering for the oilers.
Fantasy-wise he is up there.

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09-25-2010, 12:07 AM
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rynryn
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numbers don't lie, eh? well i hate numbers.

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09-25-2010, 09:35 AM
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First - sorry about the Harding error in our daily Gold... I had understood that it was to his hip, but this morning shows it was his knee that was hurt. Is that better news?

As for the preview, I am not too sure about how realistic or unrealistic the prognostications are, but this Stars team is always competitive and while the squad may not be SC material at this time, the core is there to make a push sooner than some other teams in this league.

Thanks for the read!

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09-25-2010, 12:24 PM
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GopherState
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I enjoyed the Freudian slip in that last comment.

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09-25-2010, 12:50 PM
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I enjoyed the Freudian slip in that last comment.

I am an old guy... Still have a hard time calling the Minnesota team WILD instead of STARS...

Also, last night was a rocking one, so anything I posted/did this morning came with great difficulty - I kept wondering why I was getting a soccer team when I did a google search for Minnesota Stars fan sites.

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09-29-2010, 02:26 PM
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Seems a tad optimistic to me. My feeling is that we'll be one of the worst teams in the NHL and picking in the top 5 next year. Any team with Anti Miettinen as a first line right wing is simply not going to cut it. If Bouchard can come back, allowing Havlat to move to the top line, then maybe I could see us fighting for a playoff spot.

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09-29-2010, 03:37 PM
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Going into the season I felt that we had a chance at the 7th or 8th seed.

The pre-season knocked my expectations down quite a bit, I just hope we don't end up with a pick around 7-14. Playoffs or top 5 draft for me.

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09-29-2010, 04:11 PM
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Been looking for a new hobby for this winter. Not sure I can bear the season the Wild are about to give us. Already starting to say, "Well there is always next year."

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09-29-2010, 04:42 PM
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Well it's real simple...winter = hockey time, get out the stick and skates.

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09-29-2010, 08:12 PM
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i think its just starting off like last year did, but hopefully not as bad.

we do ******/average in the first month or so then we pick it up and again hopefully roll with it.

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09-29-2010, 08:40 PM
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I still think they make the playoffs with the depth and with last years embarrassment, but I dislike the top line.What could Koivu do with speedy linemates? Wellman should be up there and somebody who isn't Brunette. Everybody excluding the centers should be interchanged to see what works the best. I just don't get the feeling Todd Richards is looking at these things and the top line will remain the same once again.

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09-29-2010, 09:07 PM
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The prediction we should be trying to make, is whether or not Richards survives this season or not?

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09-30-2010, 09:59 AM
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I still think they make the playoffs with the depth and with last years embarrassment, but I dislike the top line.What could Koivu do with speedy linemates? Wellman should be up there and somebody who isn't Brunette. Everybody excluding the centers should be interchanged to see what works the best. I just don't get the feeling Todd Richards is looking at these things and the top line will remain the same once again.
My biggest concern about putting someone with more speed up with Koivu is that Koivu isn't exactly the fastest, most dynamic skater. He has mediocre speed and mediocre acceleration.

Wellman and Cullen both have very similar acceleration. Wellman has a higher top speed while Cullen bursts slightly faster. Havlat, who isn't a slouch on skating, will have to adjust to that sort of speed. Both Wellman and Havlat control the puck well at speed. If my memory of Canes games from the last few season serves me right, Cullen has okay puck possession at speed, but not stellar.

Latendresse also has mediocre acceleration and mediocre top speed. This is another reason why I think he would be the better fit on the right side of Brunette and Koivu.

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09-30-2010, 11:34 AM
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I'd agree. You want three players that work together at a similar pace, be it fast or slow.

A line with Koivu, Brunette, and Wellman for example has a medium skater, slow skater, and fast guy. So Wellman gets the puck and races into the zone...the other two are way behind and he's in all alone with the other team's defense...outnumbered. But if Koivu and Bruno are working the puck along the boards like they do, Wellman is not moving at all, and his speed is completely neutralized.

Interestingly, Latendresse mentioned in an article this offseason that he's more comfortable on his off wing (right wing). It would be something to see a Bruno-Koivu-Lats and a Wellman-Cullen-Havlat lineup.

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09-30-2010, 12:20 PM
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Our topics are all over the place...

But I would ask again what is considered an off-wing?

To me, his off wing is as a Left Winger. He is a lefty and played on the right wing with Montreal for the most part. I don't like the puck having to cross his body for him to take a shot, so I would think he's implying that his off wing is on the left.

That being said, outside of him taking the puck across his body to shoot, being on the left wing does allow him to circle the net and protect the puck easier. That's his wrap around move...

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09-30-2010, 12:39 PM
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Off wing is a winger playing the opposite side of his hand. So a left handed player on right wing or a right handed player on left wing. Not really open to interpretation.

Latendresse being a lefty means his off wing is the right wing, which he played in junior and I believe in Montreal. Usually makes it easier to score for the winger.

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09-30-2010, 12:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jarick View Post
Off wing is a winger playing the opposite side of his hand. So a left handed player on right wing or a right handed player on left wing. Not really open to interpretation.

Latendresse being a lefty means his off wing is the right wing, which he played in junior and I believe in Montreal. Usually makes it easier to score for the winger.
I think that's the important part. For a shooter, it helps.

Look at Kovalchuk, he's a righty who (until recently) plays on the LW. I don't think anyone questions him playing on what would normally be considered his "off wing".

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09-30-2010, 01:32 PM
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Gabby did it too...so does Havlat and Bouchard oddly enough. Usually shooters like to be on their off wing and passers like to be on their natural wing. That way they can pass the puck on the forehand while shooters have their sticks towards the center of the ice for a much better shooting angle. Which is why I always wondered why Bouchard didn't play on the left wing.

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09-30-2010, 01:38 PM
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You see, this is what confuses me about the wing discussion...

I had a hockey coach tell me that it's always better to have your left handed shots on the right side and your right handed shots on the left. The blade of the stick for each will be pointing towards the middle of the ice. The puck doesn't have to cross the body for a shot to happen, which gives the goalie less time to react.

Yet, there really isn't a pattern.

Take Bouchard, for example:
He shoots left. He's a right winger. When Lemaire tried to play him on the off wing, he looked lost. His spin into the boards maneuver is him spinning towards his right, towards the board and outlets the puck to the point.

Yet, Brunette is a left winger, who shoots left. Yet, he scores more off his backhand than anyone else we have.

So what is the pattern?

It makes sense to me to as explained to me from the coach, but I don't see it in practice as a pattern.

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09-30-2010, 01:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jarick View Post
Gabby did it too...so does Havlat and Bouchard oddly enough. Usually shooters like to be on their off wing and passers like to be on their natural wing. That way they can pass the puck on the forehand while shooters have their sticks towards the center of the ice for a much better shooting angle. Which is why I always wondered why Bouchard didn't play on the left wing.
Yep.

Shooters like the greatest angle to the towards the net, which the "off" wing provides. It also makes dropping the shoulder a little easier if you are cutting hard to the outside (backhand + loose arm to protect) or one-timers from across the rink.

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