The Minnesota Wild lost their fourth straight game on Tuesday, but clinched a playoff spot anyway. Because the Colorado Avalanche also lost last night, their fourth in a row, they were eliminated from contention, and so Minnesota stumbled through the tape into their fourth straight postseason appearance. When you’re in, you’re in, but a couple of players think it’s wrong to point out that the Wild, who have been outscored 14-5 in their last four games, kind of suck right now.
After Tuesday’s 3-0 home loss to the Sharks, Minnesota’s Zach Parise and Mikko Koivu wanted to focus on the playoff spot, and not their current slump:
Interim head coach John Torchetti, who took over after Mike Yeo was fired in February, didn’t appear to understand the concept:
Backing into the playoffs isn’t ideal, but it isn’t something shameful. The postseason can act as a fresh start. Clubs that have dominated in the regular season can flame out, while teams that clinched simply because everyone below them was terrible can go on a tear. Parise and Koivu, however, are acting like it’s invalid to be concerned about the Wild’s recent struggles.
Maybe it’s a mental exercise by the team to shrug off their recent poor performances, because remembering a 5-1 ass-kicking at the hands of Winnipeg won’t bring anything productive to the table. Minnesota better hope the playoffs act as a reset button, because if something like this stat carries over to a first-round date with the Stars or Blues, the Wild won’t be around for long:
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