Wild Defense Needs More “Bacon”

One of the hallmarks of Doug Risebrough’s not-so-illustrious tenure as GM of the Minnesota Wild was bring first round prospects directly to the NHL, with diminishing returns as this process went on. Things worked out well early with Marian Gaborik making an impact right away, and Mikko Koivu, Pierre-Marc Bouchard, and Brent Burns managing to develop at the NHL level. However, most Minnesota Wild fans are understandably cautious about this process due to the spectacular failure of James Sheppard, and the disappointment of watching the already-limited Colton Gilles having his development completely stunted on the bench.

In fact, perhaps the biggest difference between DR and Chuck Fletcher’s philosophies rests in how they progress their prospects to the NHL. In the three years since Chuck Fletcher became GM, only one of the players drafted have played in more than 9 NHL games. And with 12 games to his name, Matt Hackett is hardly a seasoned veteran. Fletcher has committed to a patient approach to prospect development.

But you knew that.

Continue reading

May 2012 Prospect Rankings 4 – 1

So, this is the moment you’ve all been waiting for. The top prospects in the Minnesota Wild system. Don’t let me stop you from these rankings, check em out after the jump.

4. Johan Larsson- Center/Left Winger- Brynas (Elitserien- SWE)

2012 WJC: 6 Games; 0 Goals; 6 Assists

2011-2012 Elitserien: 49 Games; 12 Goals; 24 Assists

2012 Elitserien Playoffs: 16 Games; 2 Goals; 8 Assists

2012 World Championsips: 7 Games; 0 Goals; 2 Assists

Continue reading

May 2012 Prospect Rankings: 7 – 5

I’m not getting cute today. You want your prospect rankings? Good, here they are, after the jump. I hope they blow your mind. Spoiler Alert: Mikael Granlund isn’t in these next three slots, but there’s still some good peoples who will be making an impact fairly soon.

Just remember, if you want to keep up with the happenings of this blog, follow Jacques Lemaire’s Trap @TonyWiseau on Twitter. I’m hilarious and insightful, and even if I’m not, I only post a few times a day.

But I’m tired and cranky, so that’s all I’m saying for now.

Continue reading

May 2012 Prospect Rankings: Honorable Mention – 8

Yep, guys, I graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Superior Saturday (I’m the one that looks most like a bridge troll, the other two are my roommates, who got Cum Laude and Summa Cum Laude. I apparently just got cum.). As you might be able to imagine, a semester with three classes, two capstones, and a play doesn’t leave a lot of room for blogging. This is disappointing, because I was enjoying the process, enjoying putting out content, and enjoying the fact that there was some growth among the readership. Also, the Schultz, Zidlicky, Zanon trades, the end of a dreadful season, the merits of tanking, Zucker’s call-up, the beginnings of draft talk, and Anthony LaPanta making everyone angry were all really interesting topics that was worthy of discussion.

So, now that I’m back, we’re going to ramp up draft/free agency talk around here. So before we talk about the prospects we could get with the #7 pick, let’s take inventory of the prospects we already have. But first, let’s talk about the hot topic of the week, Granlund Watch.

It’s getting done. Granlund isn’t future Wild defenseman Justin Schultz. There’s nothing to be gained by this. He gets no money for re-entering the draft, and there’s not a desirable market he’d want to play in. Unless, of course, he wants to play in scenic Edmonton or Columbus.

So, for the first time since February, meet me after the jump. We’ll talk about some prospects.

Continue reading