Updated: 04/22/2013 4:54 PM KSTP.com By: Maricella Miranda
The Wild has to win games.
On Monday – the day after a disappointing loss against the Calgary Flames, there’s more pressure than ever for the team to win the season’s three remaining games, said the Wild’s associate captain Zach Parise. Errors and mistakes are becoming more magnified.
The team has to be sharper, Parise said. But players also need to react to pressure accordingly.
“Crappy” was the only way to describe how the team felt this morning, Parise said.
The Wild recently has experienced a string of losses. The loss Sunday dug the team into a deeper hole – away from its chances of reaching the playoffs this year.
Hopes were high that the team would beat the Calgary Flames, which has several players they just called up from their minor league affiliate. But the Wild’s losses continued when the Calgary Flames beat Minnesota 4-1.
“We have to wear teams down,” Parise said. Also, he said players need to finish checks.
But Wild Coach Mike Yeo shined a more positive light Monday on the team’s achievements. The team’s in a great spot, right now, he said. Of course, the Wild’s chances of reaching the playoffs had a little more cushion two weeks ago.
“We should be confident and we should be excited about what we’ve done,” Yeo said.
It’s been four seasons since the last time the Wild reached the playoffs.
To make the playoffs this year, the Wild has to win at least two of its three remaining games. The team currently ranks in seventh place in the Western Conference with 51 points – and Sunday’s loss didn’t change that. The top eight teams in the conference make the playoffs. The Wild's remaining schedule: home vs. Los Angeles Tuesday, home vs. Edmonton Friday, and at Colorado Saturday.
The Wild is hoping that swapping a couple players from the minor leagues, including Jake Dowell and Stephane Veilleux, will give the team more grit and toughness, making for a stronger defense.
The new plays are expected to be in the lineup for tomorrow night’s game against Los Angeles.
“It’s up to us and how we’ll play that will dictate how we’ll finish this season,” Parise said.