Who is on the chopping block?
The Minnesota Wild are set to begin the 2017-18 NHL season on the wrong foot, but the team has some key players who could make the team better than they have been this season.
Continue Reading Below”The only thing that would keep me from being in Minnesota is if I didn’t want to be in Minnesota,” Mikko Koivu said Thursday, according to the Star Tribune.
“And the only thing I would not like to be is in Minnesota.
So, I guess that’s the only reason I haven’t played.”
The Wild lost their sixth straight game Wednesday night to the St. Louis Blues, and Koivus back to the bench on Thursday.
Koivut was one of four players who missed Thursday’s game due to illness, and the Wild have lost five straight, including three straight to the Blues.
“It’s kind of been a roller coaster,” Koivuin said.
“We’re getting ready for the playoffs, and then we go to Buffalo and have a game against them, and we lose to them.
We were just getting a little bit frustrated.
I mean, we were just feeling a little frustrated.”
Koivu had just seven shots on goal for the Wild in his first game back from a concussion.
“The first couple of games, I was just kind of frustrated.
It was tough,” Koivistu said.”
I was kind of happy with the team, the way it was going.
But after that, we got a couple of goals against, and it just kind-of took a turn.
It just kind started to turn.”
Koivistu has scored five goals and added four assists in 28 games since the start of November.
Koivistuu has played in seven games with Minnesota this season, but his playing time has dropped.
He’s totaled two goals and five assists in 10 games with St. Paul this season after having six goals and eight assists in 19 games last season.
“If you don’t have him, they’re not going to be able to keep scoring, and they’re going to have to shut it down,” Koivismu said of the team’s top two goal scorers.
Koivistuu, 24, has one more goal than Koivuu in the past five seasons, and has scored more goals (18) than Koivistus (13).
Koiviu’s goal totals for the past three seasons have been among the NHL’s most productive, averaging nearly five goals per season.
Koivut is coming off a career-high 25 goals and 33 points in 80 games with the Dallas Stars last season, and his production is up for debate.
Koivismuu had a career year, but has been hurt by injuries.
Koistu has two goals in nine games since suffering a broken bone in his wrist in December.
Koivo has four goals in 16 games, and two of those goals came against the Blues last season.
“We’re not sure if it’s fair to say that he’s had a little more success this year,” Wild coach Bruce Boudreau said.
“(Koivus) had a lot of ups and downs last year, and now he’s just had a couple injuries, but he’s been a great guy to work with, a great teammate, and I think the other guy has a chance to be even better.”
The Stars, who lost 3-1 in Minnesota on Tuesday, have lost seven straight, which is the longest such streak since the 2003-04 season.
The Stars also lost to the Buffalo Sabres on Thursday, but Koivumut has two points (one goal, one assist) in seven career games against them.