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RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft

 
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RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft - 7/7/2022 9:10:47 PM   
TJSweens


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Wild couldn't pass on Yurov #24.

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RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft - 7/7/2022 9:11:59 PM   
TJSweens


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Yurov is in Montreal for the draft. Surprised he got out of Russia.

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Post #: 52
RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft - 7/7/2022 9:36:47 PM   
kgdabom

 

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We going to trade out 2 seconds for one more swing in the first?

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Post #: 53
RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft - 7/8/2022 7:55:33 AM   
bstinger


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quote:

ORIGINAL: TJSweens

BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!

Agree.

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Post #: 54
RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft - 7/8/2022 8:49:52 AM   
TJSweens


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quote:

ORIGINAL: bstinger

quote:

ORIGINAL: TJSweens

BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!

Agree.

Where the hell were you last night?! Two picks in the first round and this place was a ghost town.

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"The eternal fate of the noble and enlightened: to be brutally crushed by the armed and dumb."
Post #: 55
RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft - 7/8/2022 9:20:02 AM   
TJSweens


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Reading the reviews, the overwhelming consensus is that the Wild were big winners. Ohgren not only has a high ceiling, but a very high floor as well. He could be in the NHL in a short period of time. Yurov is considered a top 10 talent who slipped to 24 because of the political climate in Russia. The Ohgren pick gave the Wild more freedom to take Yurov.

Both guys project as big goal scorers.

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Post #: 56
RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft - 7/8/2022 10:21:56 AM   
stfrank

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: TJSweens

quote:

ORIGINAL: bstinger

quote:

ORIGINAL: TJSweens

BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!

Agree.

Where the hell were you last night?! Two picks in the first round and this place was a ghost town.

I'm always busy on Thursday nights, but did monitor the draft some.
I think there are lots of people that don't like the Fluery signing.
Post #: 57
RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft - 7/8/2022 10:24:05 AM   
stfrank

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: TJSweens

Reading the reviews, the overwhelming consensus is that the Wild were big winners. Ohgren not only has a high ceiling, but a very high floor as well. He could be in the NHL in a short period of time. Yurov is considered a top 10 talent who slipped to 24 because of the political climate in Russia. The Ohgren pick gave the Wild more freedom to take Yurov.

Both guys project as big goal scorers.

In Russo's column from this morning it sounds like they wanted Yurov big time and just hoped he would slide to their 24th pick.
A couple of very good players to add to the mix in a few years. So far a win for the Wild.
Post #: 58
RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft - 7/8/2022 10:40:12 AM   
TJSweens


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quote:

ORIGINAL: stfrank

quote:

ORIGINAL: TJSweens

Reading the reviews, the overwhelming consensus is that the Wild were big winners. Ohgren not only has a high ceiling, but a very high floor as well. He could be in the NHL in a short period of time. Yurov is considered a top 10 talent who slipped to 24 because of the political climate in Russia. The Ohgren pick gave the Wild more freedom to take Yurov.

Both guys project as big goal scorers.

In Russo's column from this morning it sounds like they wanted Yurov big time and just hoped he would slide to their 24th pick.
A couple of very good players to add to the mix in a few years. So far a win for the Wild.

Can you post Russo's column?

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RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft - 7/8/2022 10:43:25 AM   
David Levine


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How the Wild got both players they wanted at No. 19 in the NHL Draft
By Michael Russo

MONTREAL — There was a lot of chatter at the Wild’s draft table as the No. 19 pick approached Thursday, because five picks later, the Wild had another first-rounder, and two players the team’s scouting staff coveted remained high on their list.

So director of amateur scouting Judd Brackett made a strategic decision.

He wanted both players and thought the best way to get them would be to take Liam Ohgren, a high-scoring Swedish forward, with that No. 19 pick and save Danila Yurov for No. 24.

With the state of recent events in Russia, some NHL teams have shied away from taking Russian players in the draft. Brackett felt Yurov would still be there for the picking because of it.

The two players are both heavy, skilled, skate well and play with pace.

“He was probably the biggest wild card, just with what was going to happen, what was going to unfold today,” Brackett said. “At 19, we were looking at both. So we were really thrilled. There was some discussion with what to do at 19, and we thought our best chance of getting both players was this order.”

Ohgren, a left wing, spent most of last season playing for Djurgardens’ Under-20 team, where the 18-year-old scored 33 goals and 58 points in 30 games. That was the most goals in the league and the most points in the league for an under-18 player. He was named the best forward in Sweden’s junior league.

He also lit it up at a number of international tournaments and captained Sweden to a gold medal in the under-18 World Junior Championship by scoring two goals and an assist in the gold-medal game.

“He’s really well built,” Brackett said. “Physically strong, and it translates on the ice, too. He skates with pace. Good hands through the neutral zone with some power element to his play, too. Really detailed. Wore a letter with the national team. Comes from a family with a dad with a sports background. Certainly, off-ice training and conditioning, so that’s a big part of his regimen.

“He comes with sort of a pro mentality in that way. He knows how to take care of himself physically. Someone we felt that absolutely can play the way we want to play: fast, hard, heavy and skilled.”

Ohgren’s dad, Andreas, is a longtime strength coach for a number of Swedish players, including Gabriel Landeskog, Nicklas Backstrom, Patric Hornqvist and Jesper Bratt.

“A lot of great names and it’s been really good for me as well,” Liam said. “It’s been really inspirational for me to train with them to see what they’re doing to get better every day.”

Djurgardens, a storied team in Sweden, was relegated out of the SHL for next season, so Ohgren said his goal, along with a bright, young crop of players on that team, is to return that franchise to the top league. He played 25 games with limited ice time on the big club this season and hopes to bite off more ice time this season. But he performed well playing with and against men and says he improved defensively, though his bread and butter is still offense.

“My heavy shot and my scoring ability,” Ohgren said of his specialty. “I can score from almost everywhere.”

As for Yurov, he was a highly regarded right wing who played for Magnitogorsk’s junior team last season with 13 goals and 36 points in 23 games. His goal is to make the KHL team this season, a team for which he played 21 games last season in a limited role.

He’s an excellent skater and has a great shot.

The Wild are currently dealing with the stress of trying to ensure Kirill Kaprizov can get back to the United States for next season later this summer. Wild GM Bill Guerin was seen having a conversation with NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly during the draft, but there’s little the NHL can do, and commissioner Gary Bettman made clear that he doesn’t want to say anything that could be misconstrued and inflame an already sensitive situation.

Similarly, the Wild thought they were going to sign 2020 second-round pick Marat Khusnutdinov this season until he suddenly surprised the organization and re-signed with SKA St. Petersburg for two more years.

But Guerin said none of these issues scared off the Wild from drafting Yurov.

“Honestly, we take the best player that’s available,” Guerin said. “Something always comes up with everybody. It really does. If it’s not where you live, it’s who you play for. Something always comes up. So we have to just deal with these things. If we make it too big of a deal, we’re just going to be hurting ourselves and wasting our energy. We’re just going to deal with things head-on.”

Regardless, it’s not like the Wild would plan on Yurov coming to North America anytime soon, anyway.

“He’s got a year left on his contract, and he’s in a very good spot,” Brackett said. “It’s a great hockey market, and he can continue to develop and be a pro there.”

The Wild were so interested in Yurov that they met with him again earlier Thursday.

“I’m extremely excited to be a part of such a great, strong organization,” Yurov said through a translator. “I’ve seen a lot of videos on YouTube of the team inside the locker room. I can see it’s a really good group of guys. So overall, very happy, very excited.

“I consider myself a two-way player, both in the offensive zone and the defensive zone. Really in all aspects of the ice. I definitely believe my strength is my awareness on the ice and my ability to see the ice, as well as just my overall strength on skating.”

In English, asked if he’s a fan of Kaprizov, who scored 47 goals and 108 points last season a year after winning the Calder Trophy, Yurov smiled widely and said, “Dah.”

Due to COVID-19, Thursday was the first time Guerin and Brackett got to go on a draft stage and announce Wild draft picks in front of 31 other teams and a packed arena. The Wild currently have six picks on Day 2 of the draft, including two in the second round (Nos. 47 and 56).

“I think this year, getting back out and seeing things live, I think we have a little better inventory on players,” Brackett said. “I think we’re excited sitting here right now and looking at the players that are there. I can tell you going into (Friday), we’re pretty excited, and hopefully, things shake out again.”
Post #: 60
RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft - 7/8/2022 12:12:47 PM   
TJSweens


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Thanks for posting it David. It's an interesting read.

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Post #: 61
RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft - 7/8/2022 12:13:55 PM   
TJSweens


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From Bleacher Report

19. Minnesota Wild: Liam Ohgren, LW, Djugardens (Swedish Hockey League)

B/R Rank: 20

Analysis: Ohgren goes right around where we slotted him. Ohgren is a well-rounded player who put up incredible numbers in Sweden's top junior league. I don't think the Wild win the draft with this pick or anything, but it's a perfectly good pick at this stage and with the remaining available players.

Pick Grade: B+

Scouting Report

Some players have skill sets that are immediately detectable at first glance. Other players have more subtle but effective games that take a number of viewings to appreciate. Ohgren is an average skater, but the Swede nonetheless plays a fast game. He will make a decision and then confidently act on it. He rarely carries the puck into trouble nor does he overthink plays. This cerebral style will translate well at higher levels of hockey, where there is far less time and space.

The hallmark of the 18-year-old's game is his goalscoring; he potted 33 goals in 30 games at Sweden's under-20 level. He has a knack for for finding soft areas in the slot and timing his movements to put himself in areas to receive passes as the lanes of opportunity develop. His release upon receiving the pass is smooth, which is great from any area but is pertinent to being able to score from the middle of the ice. Ohgren also has the ability to beat goaltenders from greater distances, disguising his release and picking his spots well. He also displays respectable skill on the puck, able to beat defenders with stickhandling and burning goaltenders on breakaways with clever dekes. The 6'1", 201-pounder also has solid playmaking skills, though he is primarily a scorer.

Ohgren is a "200-foot" winger. He works hard behind the net and defends diligently. Although he competes, he'd do well to add feistiness to his game.

The major hindrance in Ohgren's game is his skating. It's not a liability, but the inability to find a top gear inhibits him from being able to beat defenders wide or capitalize on transition rushes.

His 1.93 points per game last season is the J20 Nationell's second-most all-time from a draft-eligible player, and what's encouraging is that most of his offense came at even strength. A caveat is that he played on a line with two other top prospects in Jonathan Lekkerimaki and Noah Ostlund, and though he was hardly a passenger on that line, they definitely heightened his production.

Ohgren will be a first-round pick based on his production and a diverse skill set that will have an impact in pro hockey. There is top-six upside as a scoring winger, but his complete game also offers a safety net as a bottom-six forward should his offensive output plateau.

< Message edited by TJSweens -- 7/8/2022 12:16:54 PM >


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Post #: 62
RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft - 7/8/2022 12:16:11 PM   
TJSweens


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Also from Bleacher Report

24. Minnesota Wild: Danila Yurov, LW/RW, Metallurg Magnitogorsk (KHL)

B/R Rank: 8

Analysis: Yurov is a complete winger. He has puck poise, scoring ability, a strong work ethic and high hockey IQ. He fell at least in part because of concern about how the Russian politics may affect his availability, but even when accounting for that, Yurov is a steal at 24th overall.

Pick Grade: A+

Scouting Report:

Yurov is one of the trickiest draft prospects to evaluate. Metallurg Magnitogorsk were the top team in the KHL this season, and as such, Yurov had a tough time cracking the lineup despite clearly being up to the pro standard, averaging a little over four minutes per game. To get him playing time, Metallurg sent him to the MHL (Eurasia's junior league) for 23 regular-season games, where he posted 36 points and faced weak competition. International play would have offered a glimpse into how he matches up against credible competition, but the World Junior Championship was postponed because of COVID-19 and Russia was banned from the U18 World Championship after its invasion of Ukraine.

One of the most polished players in this draft class, Yurov is already close to NHL size (6'1", 178 lbs) and has incredible balance on his skates. While he's not going to blaze past people, his skating mechanics are solid and he does show some separation speed. He has the hands of an offensive winger. The right wing beats defenders with inside-out dekes or by waiting them out until they overcommit. His lefty release is effortless, and he has a knack for locating the goaltender's vulnerable spots. He is a quality playmaker and, to stay with the theme, is patient with the puck until he finds optimal passing options. Yurov's poise with the puck is unmatched.

Yurov's effort off the puck is outstanding. He's a puck hawk who immediately transitions to recovery mode once his team loses possession. He is a diligent, aggressive forechecker who is active in the defensive zone and looks to disrupt play with an active stick. Despite the lack of KHL playing time, Metallurg's coaching staff did occasionally trust him to play on the penalty kill and on late shifts while protecting a lead. Yurov does play with an edge and will instinctively step in if he feels a teammate received a cheap shot or bad hit.

Some teams are hesitant to draft Russians even in normal times, as there's a chance they remain in the KHL for several years. Those concerns will be accentuated this year by the Russian invasion of Ukraine, which may make certain teams nervous about if and when these players may be willing or able to make the move to North America. Combine that with his lack of playing time against valid competition and Yurov may fall in the draft. On makeup alone, though, he is a clear top-10 prospect and one could reasonably argue he's in the top five. Yurov projects as a top-six winger who plays a complete game and maybe even earns a spot on the penalty kill.

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Post #: 63
RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft - 7/8/2022 2:26:18 PM   
stfrank

 

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Wild hope Marc-Andre Fleury re-signing won’t create another tense situation with Cam Talbot

MONTREAL — It was an efficient day for the Wild on Thursday, as they infused two quality forwards into the pipeline during Day 1 of the NHL Draft and addressed the immediate future by re-signing future Hall of Famer Marc-Andre Fleury for what they anticipate will be a Fleury-Cam Talbot tandem.

However, Wild general manager Bill Guerin plans to call Talbot on Friday to make sure Talbot understands his rationale in bringing back Fleury and is comfortable with likely splitting games next season, as the two goalies did down the stretch last season.

Talbot, the Wild’s clear-cut No. 1 until Fleury was acquired for a second-round pick from the Chicago Blackhawks in March, is a consummate pro and has a great relationship with Fleury, but he also made it clear he wasn’t happy that he played second fiddle to Fleury in the playoffs after going 13-0-3 in his final 16 regular-season games. What’s more, one of Talbot’s agents, George Bazos, could be seen voicing his dismay to Guerin in a Bell Centre corridor during Thursday night’s first round, not long after Fleury’s two-year, $7 million contract was announced.


“I’ve had some communication with him,” Guerin said of Talbot. “Cam has been nothing but supportive and spectacular through this whole thing. He is a pro. You can’t take guys like Cam Talbot for granted and just assume he’s going to be fine and everything like that just because he says he is. We want to make sure that he’s good.”

That’s the issue though.

While a source close to Talbot says he keeps saying he’s OK with the situation, it’s clear there were hurt feelings with the way he was treated in the playoffs when he didn’t get tabbed for a start until the team faced a must-win Game 6 against the St. Louis Blues.

Talbot is expected to talk to his agents Friday, and there’s a chance Guerin could be on that call. At a minimum, Guerin is planning a separate call. While the source said this could be coming to a head, Guerin feels it’s a luxury to return with what he believes will be one of the best goaltending tandems in the NHL, and it’s hard to buy that he would trade Talbot this offseason even if Talbot would welcome such a move. Publicly, Talbot said after the season he wants to return and not to be traded.

The Wild just traded an 85-point guy in Kevin Fiala and don’t have the money to replace him externally. So if they want to be on par, or better, than their 113-point 2021-22 season, they’re going to need significantly better special teams and two quality goalies to win games behind a team that must also be stingier defensively.

Guerin said he’s going into Friday’s call anticipating that Talbot will be “fine.”

“To have Marc-Andre Fleury and Cam Talbot as a one-two punch, I think we have one of the top tandems in the league,” Guerin said. “Each and every night, we’re going to put a fantastic goalie in net. I think that’s really important.”

During a phone interview with The Athletic on Thursday, Fleury said that even though he could have waited until Wednesday to make his decision as to whether to test free agency, he felt it was incumbent on him to let Guerin know before the draft whether he was returning.

There are different pressure points in every offseason, and the 37-year-old Fleury has been around long enough to know he owed it to Guerin not to handcuff him heading into free agency. The draft is usually when offseason trades are made, and with the No. 2 goalie market ultra-thin this summer, Fleury knew that Guerin possibly would have needed to replace him via trade Thursday.

Guerin praised Fleury and agent Allan Walsh for the respect they showed in making their decision Thursday.

In 11 regular-season starts with the Wild, Fleury went 9-2 with a 2.74 goals-against average and .910 save percentage. He started the first five games of a first-round playoff loss to the Blues and went 2-3 with a 3.04 GAA and .906 save percentage.

Fleury, a winner of three Stanley Cups, wants to win, and he feels the Wild can do just that even without the production Fiala brought. Fleury ranks third all-time with 520 regular-season wins (in 939 games) and is tied for third with 92 postseason wins. In 18 seasons, he has a career 2.57 GAA, .913 save percentage and 71 shutouts. He’s 92-73 in 16 postseasons with a 2.54 GAA, a .912 save percentage and three Stanley Cup rings.

“This is one tight-knit team, and the chemistry, the work ethic, is great,” Fleury told The Athletic on Thursday night. “All together as a team, we’re going to find a way to win lots of games and help each other throughout.”

Fleury has a great relationship with Guerin, his 2009 Stanley Cup-winning teammate on the Pittsburgh Penguins. And during a sitdown Thursday morning at his home, 45 minutes from Montreal, Fleury talked over and over about how much he loved his Wild teammates. He said there were no egos in their room. Guerin feels it was those teammates and the culture instilled in there that pushed this over the finish line and caused Fleury not to look at multiple options he surely would have had.


Fleury received a full no-move clause. The contract works for both the Wild and Fleury. Because his salary is $3.5 million in each of the two seasons, if Fleury decides to hang up his goalie pads after this upcoming season, the Wild won’t be hit with a $3.5 million cap hit in 2023-24 that would be standard for 35-year-old or older players who sign multiyear contracts.

If Talbot were to be traded this summer, it would free up $3.67 million in precious cap space for a Wild team that only has $1.4 million left. But Guerin doesn’t seem inclined to do that despite the fact Talbot, 35, is entering the final year of a three-year contract. He is 51-20-9 with a 2.71 GAA and .913 save percentage in two seasons with the Wild.

“Both of them are a little older, but they both keep themselves in peak, peak shape,” Guerin said. “So I’m not concerned about years or longevity or health or anything like that with these two guys. They’re two professionals that take care of themselves.”
Post #: 64
RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft - 7/8/2022 2:30:49 PM   
stfrank

 

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We could be in a real pickle if Talbot decides he wants out now and asks for a trade. There are no good goalies out there to take his place at his price point and we have no money to work with.
After the way Evason screwed him over in the playoffs he could easily blow up our so-called "great locker room" and I wouldn't blame him on bit. To me, Guerin should have had that talk with Talbot before he signed Flower.
Post #: 65
RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft - 7/8/2022 3:34:11 PM   
TJSweens


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Scott Wheeler of The Athletic ($): Lists Wild as a winner, defined as “Teams I believe won out over their competition with consistent, sleuth, home-run-level selections relative to where they picked.” He writes: “The Wild just keep drafting well. They drafted as well as any team in the league from 2019-2021 for my money and the Ohgren and Yurov picks kicks off this draft class on the right foot too. They’re also very similar players, in that they can play it any way you’d like offensively and they’re well-rounded off the puck. They can hang onto the puck and create for themselves, they can play the give-and-go game, they can both score and play-make. And they’re both combo power and finesse players who are sturdy on their skates. Ohgren shoots it harder than Yurov (the puck really rocks back into his stance and then pops off his blade) but I think Yurov has slightly higher upside on the whole. There’s also almost no doubt in my mind that they both become good NHLers, assuming Yurov can get more reps in Russia next year and eventually get over to North America.”

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Post #: 66
RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft - 7/8/2022 8:16:22 PM   
Jeff Jesser


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quote:

ORIGINAL: stfrank

quote:

ORIGINAL: TJSweens

quote:

ORIGINAL: bstinger

quote:

ORIGINAL: TJSweens

BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!

Agree.

Where the hell were you last night?! Two picks in the first round and this place was a ghost town.

I'm always busy on Thursday nights, but did monitor the draft some.
I think there are lots of people that don't like the Fluery signing.



I’m normally pretty active but didn’t have signal. We were in lake Powell. In Vegas tonight so catching up. I like both picks and, obviously, hate the flower resign
Post #: 67
RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft - 7/9/2022 8:37:02 AM   
stfrank

 

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The latest from Russo:

​​Wild offseason off to an ominous start: The latest on the Kaprizov situation, Talbot drama and more


MONTREAL — Make no mistake: As excited as the Wild were with their eight selections in the 2022 NHL draft, including four picks in the top 56, and the re-signing of Marc-Andre Fleury, this has been an ominous start to the offseason for the Wild.

Kirill Kaprizov is caught up in a chilling political situation regarding his military requirements, is still in Russia and, according to league sources, was turned away from returning to the United States — something that is privately sending shivers down the spines of everybody in the Wild organization even if they’re publicly saying otherwise.

Fleury is locked and loaded for two more years, but even though Cam Talbot maintained after the season he’d be fine being in a tandem with Fleury and doesn’t want to be traded, he clearly feels burned — to the extent that Friday there needed to be a meeting between Wild general manager Bill Guerin and Talbot’s agent, George Bazos, who was seen unhappily talking to Guerin after Fleury’s signing was announced the day before.

Bazos texted The Athletic’s Pierre LeBrun after meeting with Guerin during the third round Friday, saying, “We both stated our positions. Billy has a lot to think about.”


Guerin’s retort?

“I don’t have shit to do,” he said Friday. “Cam Talbot’s under contract. George can say whatever the hell he wants. My team’s set right now, and that’s the way it goes. So we can have all the discussions we want. Cam’s a member of our team. We really like Cam. All we’re trying to do is win. All we’re trying to do is have good, strong goaltending, and I think we have that.”

Some are interpreting Bazos’ comment as meaning Talbot wants to be traded, something that wouldn’t be a surprise since it bothered him that Fleury started the first five games of the playoffs despite Talbot finishing the regular season on a 13-0-3 run. But team sources say Talbot actually wants a raise by way of a contract extension. He has a $3.67 million cap hit and will make $3 million in the last year of his contract next season. Fleury’s contract pays him $500,000 more.

Oh, and one other thing: Kevin Fiala, who had the second-best offensive season in Wild history in 2021-22, was traded to the Los Angeles Kings for futures. The trade for the No. 19 pick and University of Minnesota defenseman Brock Faber has been lauded by scouts throughout the NHL, but that doesn’t help the Wild next season, when 33 goals and 85 points need to be replaced by a team that barely has enough cap space to afford a house in Edina.

Still, Guerin feels there’s no reason the Wild can’t be as good as last year’s 113-point team with the returning roster, an extra bottom-six forward they’ll pursue in free agency and young talents Marco Rossi and Calen Addison vying for roster spots.

“We can always get better. We had a pretty good team last year,” Guerin said. “Maybe we don’t need to rely as much on our theatrics as we did with pulling the goalie and stuff, which is a great tool that we have. We’re very good at it. Maybe protecting leads, things like that. But I think the biggest thing is when we get into the playoffs is being able to handle it.”

Guerin is looking for the team to be better defensively and for the porous special teams to improve drastically. It is abundantly clear that he has instructed the coaching staff this summer to find solutions to fix the power play and penalty kill.

But Guerin doesn’t want to sacrifice the Wild’s offense (they ranked fifth in the NHL at 3.72 goals per game) despite the loss of Fiala.

“I love the style we play. It’s fun,” he said. “And we won a lot of games this year, a lot of points.”

Guerin casually shrugged an affirmative Friday when asked if he’s confident Kaprizov will be able to get back to North America later this summer, but he declined to talk about Kaprizov.


It’s an extremely serious and delicate situation, and the team saying the wrong thing could potentially make it worse. Guerin could be seen meeting with NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly on Thursday night in an attempt to seek guidance. The Wild are working behind the scenes trying to get things sorted out.

To summarize: The Wild superstar has been accused of buying a fraudulent military ID in 2017, something his father has denied publicly. Oleg Kaprizov says his son has been a student, which has allowed him to defer his military obligations. But that apparently expired June 30.

But this is the daunting thing: Kaprizov is suddenly entrenched in major political drama amid a Russia-Ukraine war and escalated tensions between the United States and Russia. And even though the Wild are publicly portraying this as no big deal, they won’t breathe a sigh of relief until he’s safely back in the U.S.

According to league sources, Kaprizov left Russia recently for Dubai and tried to return to the U.S. He couldn’t clear into the U.S., though, perhaps because he doesn’t currently have a work visa despite signing a five-year contract last September. As The Athletic reported July 1, several Europeans — not just Russians — were given exceptions to play last season without visas because U.S. consulates were inundated during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Kaprizov, sources say, tried to cross the ocean by way of Caribbean Islands after not succeeding in the Dubai route. Again, he wasn’t permitted. Kaprizov then returned to Russia, where he remains.

“It’s scary. It’s scary for all of us,” coach Dean Evason said. “It’s a scary situation in our world. To see somebody as close as we know Kirill, yeah, it’s a scary situation. And we hope that it all gets sorted out correctly.”

As for Talbot, when Guerin traded for Fleury in March, Guerin said there was no time for “petty bullshit” if the addition would bother Talbot, who had begun to catch fire after a major rough patch in his season.

Then, after the season, when Talbot said he wasn’t happy about the Wild’s decision to have him play caddy to Fleury in the playoffs, and when his wife, Kelly, sounded off on Twitter, Talbot said it was overblown and Guerin said there would be “no controversy, no drama” if he were to return with Fleury and Talbot.

Now, there’s controversy and drama even though the Fleury signing couldn’t have blindsided Talbot. Guerin has been openly talking about wanting Fleury back for two months.

In Fleury’s mind, everything is hunky-dory between him and Talbot. He said he exchanged messages with Talbot and thinks a tagteam would be good for both goalies, who are 37 and 35, respectively.

Fleury expects an almost 50-50 split of starts, similar to what happened after his arrival last season from Chicago.

“Both of us will play, and I think that’s something that will make us good, too,” Fleury said. “Because every night we’ll have a fresh goalie in net, and a guy that can win games. And we’ll help each other, push each other. I think it will be good for the team.

“I get along great with Cam. He’s a good goalie and a good person. Sometimes it’s a little easier on the body, too. I’m getting older, so those rests in the season help me stay healthy and stay fresh when you’re playing.”

Guerin didn’t have a chance to connect with Talbot other than text messages Friday because of a Rogers outage in Montreal that was disrupting cell calls.

“But, you know, bottom line, these guys are under contract,” Guerin said. “They’re our players. And I have faith in Cam that he’s going to be OK. I’m not going to make a big deal out of this.”


I tried to ask Guerin one more question about Talbot, but he was in no mood and shut it down. The question I was going to ask is why not trade Talbot, sign a more inexpensive backup for $1 million or something and use that extra $2.67 million cap hit on a quality forward in free agency.

Right now, the Wild have only $1.4 million in space, and they’re indicating that Rossi and Addison have great chances to make the team and that they plan to sign another bottom-six forward. That means we should fully expect a trade at some point to clear cap space, because right now the Wild can’t afford two forwards, a defenseman and have the ability to conduct business next season with internal callups.

But Guerin was done talking about Talbot: “We’ve got kids that got drafted today. This is the biggest day of their life. I want to talk about these guys.”


Evason said he’s still “bitter” about not getting past the first round and “I hope it’s fresh for the players, because that’s what we’re going to take to training camp.”

Evason has had a complicated relationship with Fiala since their days together in Milwaukee but wished him well with the Kings.

“He’s developed in part because of what we did as an organization with the Minnesota Wild,” Evason said. “He’s developed to be an $8 million player. Great. Good for him. I’m very happy to see where he’s come from when I’d seen him as an 18-year-old, a 19-year-old. He’s made such a great strides.”

Evason added that the Wild will need to replace Fiala by committee. Several players will get looks in training camp, but it sure feels Evason is penciling in Rossi, a 2020 first-round pick, on a line with Matt Boldy and Freddy Gaudreau or Tyson Jost to start camp.

“We’re going to try different people in those spots,” Evason said. “And obviously, Rossi is going to get a clear, very good opportunity. I could name probably six guys that we’re thinking about, talking about. … We will go through that process in training camp. We’ve got lots of games, so we’ll get a good opportunity to see people play with different people, and hopefully we can do it by committee.”

First, Rossi, who was at almost a point per game in his first year with Iowa last season, must earn a roster spot. But if he does, Evason cautioned there could be some growing pains, “which is part of the development process.”

But he expects Boldy to take a big step after scoring 15 goals and 39 points in 47 games during his rookie season, a 26-goal, 68-point pace over a full season for a guy who didn’t turn 21 until April 5. Evason reminded that Addison ran Iowa’s power play from the point, with Rossi on the half wall. If they make the team, Evason expects both to be integral parts of a Wild power play that he vows will undergo systematic tweaks next season after failing miserably during both the regular season and playoffs.

As for Rossi, Guerin said, “(The job’s) up for grabs, yeah, but you’ve got to take it. … I expect him to rise to that occasion. He’s a character kid. I expect him to come in in great shape and ready to go.”

As for Addison, even with Jon Merrill maybe not ready for the start of the season, Guerin said, “Addy’s still going to have to push for a spot. He’s definitely capable of doing it. It’s a matter of just making our decisions hard, and he’s just gotta push. He’s got all the tools to do it. I’m sure he’ll be ready for the challenge.”

Guerin quipped Thursday that maybe he’s a “fool” for thinking the Wild will be just as good or better than last season. There’s no doubt this is still a good hockey team, even without Fiala.

But between the Kaprizov situation, Fiala’s departure, Talbot’s drama and the cap squeeze, it feels like this offseason has gotten off to a worrying start.

Or, maybe I’m the fool.
Post #: 68
RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft - 7/11/2022 9:58:04 AM   
twinsfan


Posts: 59749
Joined: 12/21/2009
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Why don't we just trade Talbot and bring up that stud we have in the minors?

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Post #: 69
RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft - 7/11/2022 10:14:22 AM   
Phil Riewer


Posts: 23401
Joined: 8/24/2007
From: MN
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: twinsfan

Why don't we just trade Talbot and bring up that stud we have in the minors?


Special K situation takes priority. Trading away Fiala and if somehow no special K.....

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Post #: 70
RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft - 7/11/2022 10:35:24 AM   
stfrank

 

Posts: 10373
Joined: 7/22/2007
From: Twin Cities
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: twinsfan

Why don't we just trade Talbot and bring up that stud we have in the minors?

Wallstedt is 19 years old, just recently signed with the Wild, and has yet to play his first game in the AHL.
He will need at least a year to adjust to playing a pro schedule and it makes no sense to rush a young promising goalie.
Post #: 71
RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft - 7/11/2022 10:45:40 AM   
Jeff Jesser


Posts: 18226
Joined: 7/16/2007
From: Southern Cal
Status: offline
Agree, let him get experience in the minors. Does him no good to sit on the bench and get a game every 15 days in the bigs.

As for Fiala, I still have a gut feeling that goes beyond salary cap implications.
Post #: 72
RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft - 7/11/2022 10:54:40 AM   
stfrank

 

Posts: 10373
Joined: 7/22/2007
From: Twin Cities
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: Jeff Jesser

Agree, let him get experience in the minors. Does him no good to sit on the bench and get a game every 15 days in the bigs.

As for Fiala, I still have a gut feeling that goes beyond salary cap implications.

Yeah, there was a reason he was always in the dog house beyond what we were hearing.
Whatever it was, we will probably never really get the real reason.
Post #: 73
RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft - 7/11/2022 11:21:41 AM   
Phil Riewer


Posts: 23401
Joined: 8/24/2007
From: MN
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: stfrank

quote:

ORIGINAL: Jeff Jesser

Agree, let him get experience in the minors. Does him no good to sit on the bench and get a game every 15 days in the bigs.

As for Fiala, I still have a gut feeling that goes beyond salary cap implications.

Yeah, there was a reason he was always in the dog house beyond what we were hearing.
Whatever it was, we will probably never really get the real reason.


I really have a feeling Guerin is trading some of the Defenseman stock maybe including Dumba for young scoring.....it is a necessity w/o Fiala.

Talbot...he is upset about only having a year left on his deal.

< Message edited by Phil Riewer -- 7/11/2022 2:20:41 PM >


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Post #: 74
RE: Wild Post Mortem, Off Season and Draft - 7/11/2022 12:04:13 PM   
twinsfan


Posts: 59749
Joined: 12/21/2009
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: Phil Riewer

quote:

ORIGINAL: stfrank

quote:

ORIGINAL: Jeff Jesser

Agree, let him get experience in the minors. Does him no good to sit on the bench and get a game every 15 days in the bigs.

As for Fiala, I still have a gut feeling that goes beyond salary cap implications.

Yeah, there was a reason he was always in the dog house beyond what we were hearing.
Whatever it was, we will probably never really get the real reason.


I really have a feeling Guering is trading some of the Defenseman stock maybe including Dumba for young scoring.....it is a necessity w/o Fiala.

Talbot...he is upset about only having a year left on his deal.

A contract is a contract where I grew up.

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I get things done
Post #: 75
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