The Wild’s season is now at an intermission, with the Olympics taking up the next two weeks of February. Minnesota has 5 players that were selected for Olympic rosters, though Mikko Koivu will miss the Games with an injury. The rest of the team gets a healthy couple of weeks off.
This is a good point for evaluation, obviously. The Wild have been beset by key injuries, like Zach Parise and Mikael Granlund, as well as the already mentioned Koivu and a few players on defense. It’s not nearly as bad as it was last year, but it’s still significant. Excuses aside, they have managed to move into playoff position with 69 points on the season so far. They are safely in the post season, too, with at least 7 points separating them from the first team out of the playoffs, the Phoenix Coyotes.
That said, Minnesota is in the final playoff spot in the West. No doubt this isn’t the improvement many people had in mind for the 2013-14 season. After a staggeringly poor December, however, they had some work to do, mostly without Parise, to get to this point.
So what’s the verdict? Is the Wild overachieving or underachieving? What are we supposed to feel? I think a that the team is about as good as expected, but the competition in the west is better than had been expected. Still, it would be nice not to have to play the Blackhawks in the first round again this year.
What do YOU think?