Wild: Scouting the Enemy

Time for brief history lesson. Last season, after the Minnesota Wild were unable to reach a lease agreement with the Toyota Center, the Wild said “happy trails” to the Houston Aeros. What became of that failed negotiation would be a return of an AHL team in Des Moines, Iowa. Previously they had the Iowa Stars (2005-06 through 2007-08) and lastly the Iowa Chops (2008-09). It’s been two seasons in the making for Iowa hockey fans but they now have the Iowa Wild. 10,213 fans showed up for the home opener and they are averaging 5,636 fans a night to make the Wells Fargo Arena a great atmosphere to play in front of.

History lesson over. Now about that team…

The Wild boast a roster built on team success. There is a grand total of 19 players on the roster who have scored at least a point. There is a three-way tie for most points scored on the team with 6 points and a a five-way tie with players who have scored 5 points.

Top goal scorer? Erik Haula and Brett Bulmer with 3 goals each.

Top in assists? A pair of defensemen: Brian Connelly and ex-Admiral Jonathon Blum who both have 5 assists.

In net the team has been sharing the load between Darcy Kuemper and Johan Gustafsson. Through seven games, Kuemper appears to have the edge and that was slammed home with his winning effort in relief of Gustafsson against the Chicago Wolves. He’s started every game since that relief appearance and won two out of three starts.

Perhaps the single most important factor comes on this lovely Saturday. Both the Ads and Wild played last night. Both won. Yet, the Ads have the day off. The Wild are set to play the Texas Stars for the second straight night before finishing off a three-in-three when the Ads storm in Sunday afternoon. The Ads finally had a quick start last night against the Rockford IceHogs. With a tired Iowa Wild team on deck, expect the Ads to pounce on them early and have an extra gear in the third period thanks to the Saturday off.

Do you think the Ads point streak extends past this match up? Your thoughts on the return of Blummer against his old team? Will the day off for the Ads be the difference maker in this game? Banter! Banter! Banter!

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