The Minnesota Wild have lost their last five games and are languishing in sixth place in the National Hockey League Central Division, far from pleasing their general manager Bill Guerin.
With just five wins in 17 games this season, head coach Dean Evason’s team is struggling in the standings, and we shouldn’t necessarily count on any transactions to change the situation, as the organization has its hands somewhat tied by financial restrictions of more than $14 million in payroll. list, the result of buying out the contracts of Zach Parisé and Ryan Suter.
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Also, the Wild’s recent trip to Sweden is far from solving the club’s woes, which fell to the Ottawa Senators and Toronto Maple Leafs this weekend. And Guerin made his message clear during a meeting he organized especially for the players.
“I’m not happy with where we are,” he told The Athletic. My biggest concern is our level of competitiveness. The guys work hard every night and they care (about success), I know that. However, this is a different kind of commitment and focus. I don’t think we got it.”
“It’s everything from faceoffs, to puck battles, to execution, positioning, and being able to be in the right place to make passes from the point to the other. Everything needs to be improved.”
Will the coach pay?
Guerin, however, refused to point the finger at Evason, except that anyone who knows the sport knows that a coach’s fate is still a matter of wins and losses. The results will have to follow, but for now it is up to the hockey players to act. The sooner, the better, because the qualifications for the next series are further away.
“As the old saying goes, you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink. I think Dean is doing a good job. And you know what? He can’t get on the ice and play for the boys. It’s up to them to do it,” the general manager recalled.
Minnesota will return to action on Friday when they host the Colorado Avalanche.