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MINNESOTA WILD TO ENTER SALARY CAP HELL AND MUST REPAIR RELATIONSHIP WITH CAM TALBOT THIS OFFSEASON

MAY 14, 2022  (22H33)      BRENNEN BEAUDIN
After a crushing defeat by the St. Louis Blues in Round 1 of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs, the Minnesota Wild have a lot more trouble coming their way this offseason. The team made the questionable decision of starting veteran goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury for five of the six games in the series, and the team as a whole did not show up. Young superstar Kirill Kaprizov was the lone bright spot in the series, as he recorded 7 goals in six games, the most goals in a series in team history. Now, the team is entering what could be set up as one of the most chaotic seasons in their 22 years in the NHL.

Minnesota will be feeling the pain of buying out veterans Zach Parise and Ryan Suter, as they will be knocking out over $12.7 million in cap space over 2022-23 alone. Then proceeding with over $14.7 million the following two seasons, and a little under $2 million the two seasons after.

Along with the limited money, the Wild will be dealing with both disgruntled fans and players. Fans are upset due to another disappointing playoff run, one where many fans thought they had a chance to go deep into the playoffs, heck maybe even the Stanley Cup Finals. Many of their key players did not show up. Kevin Fiala went completely MIA during the team's six playoff games after being one of the top players in the league over the final stretch of games. Matt Dumba was another key player that struggled and just didn't look like himself in the postseason. It seems likely that both players will have a good chance of being dealt this summer in order to alleviate some tension on cap space. On top of this, the team is now dealing with a goalie who is pissed off.

Cam Talbot went 13-0-3 in his final 16 regular-season starts, and Evason and Co. decided to go with Fleury for the first five games of the playoffs. Talbot admitted he was pissed, as many players would be. When he was asked about the decision, one could tell he was definitely unhappy but tried to handle it in the most professional way possible.

"That doesn't really matter. To me, that's between the coaching staff and myself and Flower. Obviously, was I disappointed? Yeah. Pissed off? Yeah. But they expected that. They want you to be pissed off. I mean, who doesn't want to play in the Stanley Cup playoffs? But I respected the decision, of course."


The Wild do have some key players including Kaprizov, Spurgeon, and Brodin, along with youngsters Matt Boldy, Marco Rossi, and Adam Beckman proving that they can provide stability in the NHL. The question that still needs to be asked is whether or not the team will continue contending with many changes imminent this offseason that could shakeup their record as well as their dressing room.



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