Fireworks for the Hockey State. Minnesota Wild Sign Zach Parise and Ryan Suter.

Surly & I are die-hard L.A. Kings fans. You know this. However, there is one team for which I have always held a soft spot and that is / was the Minnesota North Stars. Since they moved to Dallas, they became dead to me (steers and queers, as the expression goes) so that spot was reserved for the other Minnesota team, the Wild. Why? Because I consider Minnesota to be the Hockey State in the United States and, despite Detroit’s self serving and undeserving title to itself as “Hockey Town”, I can name about 10 towns in Minnesota that are more deserving of said title, starting with Warroad and ending with St. Paul.

I also have a very dear friend who is a Wisconsin boy and a big Minnesota Wild fan. My friend Tyler was recently converted to the L.A. Kings as his second or “alternate” team two seasons ago but Minnesota is still his number one.

It is for all of these reasons that on June 30, I tweeted:

When I read this morning that the Minnesota Wild have signed both Zach Parise and Ryan Suter, two very talented and hard working American players (it is not coincidence the announcement was made on July 4), a smile spread across my face. I then immediately called Tyler who had not yet heard the news.

Zach Parise, a Minnesota native, and Ryan Suter, a Wisconsin born player, didn’t come cheap. The deal is reported to be 13 years and $98 million dollar for each. That is a dual cap hit of over $15 million. But when you consider the Wild were dead last in offense last season and their powerplay was as bad as ours during the regular season, they need the juice. They were already a good defensive team so Suter will only make that stronger.

Does this make the Minnesota Wild a contender? I don’t know but it does make them a hell of a lot better. Contenders aren’t made on paper. They are made on the ice and line and player chemistry as well as coaching play a big role in that – Stanley Cup Champion L.A. Kings fans know all about that.

Tyler will bask in the Parise and Suter glow and we’ll mostly talk about the Wild today when I see him. After all, if there is one thing that being a long time fan of the Stanley Cup Champion L.A. Kings and the greatest team in hockey will do for you is built humility.

Henry David Thoreau wrote, “all good things are wild and free.” How appropriate. Zach Parise is free from Newark and a Minnesota Wild.



Categories: L.A. Kings News

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13 replies

  1. I second all of this, good for the Wild.

    More importantly, what the fuck is up with this weather? I don’t want to lay poolside with this murky shit.

  2. The West Conf now becomes overloaded vs the East with high power talent. I say that based on all the deals now completed. Still, the Kings are now fully elite and stiff competition will bring out their best.
    Yeah no reason to hang out at the beach today. I guess I go to my local ice rink to get a hot dog and coke and watch some midget games.

  3. Good for Parise, Suter and the Wild. Their deals are crazy. Thoughts can now be turned to who else could be added, if anybody at all, to the Kings. Even though the team seems set, I find myself having wanted Doan all along. Kings are going to be a marked bunch next season and getting the best effort from every team. Like to see a proven warrior around to dish some out in return.

    • Triple: You raise a good point that there are dirty cheap shot artists around that will try to do some heavy duty damage to any number of our players. There are some psycho goons hanging around in the league that may target some damage to Brown, Doughty, Richards, etc, etc. I am thinking that it is not so vital to have an enforcer on our squad, but, rather, an intimidator or deterrent mean SOB that puts fear into the eyes of opponents. Maybe DL and Sutter have some plans along these lines.

      • My observation is that there is some restraint shown during a playoff push and also during each round towards the cup. Our team is big and physical and we cracked some heads along the way during each series. We play the Western Conference teams a lot and I sense some payback from any of those teams as well as the ones on the outside. Going forward I’d like to see teams dreading having to play us because they hurt so bad afterward. We establish that gritty, bruising style we will gain a psychological edge and we may have a far better record going into next year’s run. A guy like Doan would just add another rugged body wearing the opponent down and giving teams second thoughts at running at our guys.

  4. If the great state of Texas is filled with “steers n’ queers” then what must L.A. have:

    Fags and Drags
    Dykes and Bi’s
    Trannys and freaks

    Oh, and don’t forget the welfare queens, gang bangers, drug addicts, and brain-dead socialist politicians.

    Yeah, California is awesome. That’s why its residents (the smart ones) are fleeing the state like escaped convicts!

    • Fags, Drags, Dykes, Bi’s, trannys and freaks? If I was a bigot ass like you and hated all those groups I’d lose a ton of friends. If I hated freaks specifically there would be a lot of self loathing in my life.

      I’m glad you hate California because you sound like an asshole.

    • Ha ha. I love that 3 words got you that riled up. Then again, at age 9, you can’t really be in control of your emotions yet, right? We understand.

  5. This is awesome. My moms side of the family is from MN, and that is where my love of hockey was born so I owe that state a ton. Hockey is a part of everything there. I’m excited to see them pick up such talent and a hometown hero to boot. Go Wild!

  6. A perfect place for both of them to land. A great present to a starving and deserving fanbase.

    MIN is perfect for them because imo they are still a few players away and most likely a season or two away from being a top level contender. I say this is perfect, because it means Parise and/or Suter didn’t sign with CHI or DET.

    The guys here in Chicago were foaming at the mouth all week in anticipation of getting both players. The Hawks adding those two would then realistically only be a goalie away from testing LA. For DET it would have meant a re-booted rebuild for Holland and the Wings. Without them DET to me now looks like only a second tier team in the WC.

    By landing in MIN it gives the Wild a fantastic step forward. Now they must build on it and fill in the gaps and add depth, to be serious contenders. For a Kings fan like me it means two very good players didn’t end up with a team like the Hawks that are fairly equal on paper and the ice.

    For the fans of MIN it means the team is serious about winning. There is ZERO reason why the NHL should flounder and struggle in the “state of hockey”. I am from MN and grew up there until my early teens. I can say without a doubt that hockey is the priority. From elementary school to college, it is always there. When we were kids nobody played Pop Warner football. Why? Simple…if you got hurt playing football you may miss hockey season. Every other sport revolves around and plays second to the puck.

    Ironically many in the state back in the 70s and 80s didn’t support, or care much for the Stars which lead to their move to Dallas. There is so much time and attention put into kids, jr high, high school and college hockey; there isn’t much time left to even worry about the NHL. Not to mention are you going to give your time and money to your kids hockey and the program? Or are you going to spend those same dollars on millionaires and $10 beers? Simple decision really.

    It’s great to see NHL hockey return to MN and I really pray it never leaves the state. For the Wild to really pull fans they HAVE to have homegrown talent on the roster. If they draft and develop kids from MN, ND and WI the fans will come. They will want to see players they have watched for years come up through the systems.

    Good for MN, the Wild and even better for the Kings…..because a serious contender didn’t land Suter or Parise.

  7. Although I have always been a die hard Kings fan, born in LA, schooled here, worked here, etc, I do have a soft spot for Minnesota as my mom was born in Baudette, Minn, which is on the Rainy River which serves as the USA/Canadian Border in that part of the state. I have various cousins and so forth in that state and across the border too, where I do hear first hand about the great popularity for hockey on many levels.
    Not only that, but my dad was born in Winnipeg Beach Manitoba so that now I have a soft spot for the Jets, which I suppose someday will be apart of the Western Conference.
    That will eventually produce a very interesting new intense rivalry again between Minnesota and Manitoba.
    By the way, you cannot beat the fishing along the Rainy River that flows to the Lake of the Woods. I highly recommend that area for fishing enthusiasts.
    For those that may not know, the USA Lake of the Woods extends significantly farther north of the US Canadian border (49th latitude), so that people that live in that lake area are located further north than Canadians that live just above the 49th parallel. In other words, other than Alaska, we have US citizens living much further north than many Canadians, especially in the heavy populated lower Ontario region.
    Not only that, but most of the Canadians that live in Vancouver BC are living further south than the US citizens that are living at the northern end of the Lake of the Woods, which however is super sparsely populated. That unique area of the US is so pristine. The reason the USA border even went that far north is an early 1800 century historical event from survey parties and agreements made with the USA and England.
    It may be for these geographical reasons that Minnesota gravitated more and more into hockey world with its close nexus to both Manitoba and Ontario.
    I know this is kind of off topic, but, we in the LA area may be having more to watch and be concerned with on what is going on with the Wild and all of the support it will be getting from its fan base.

  8. Born and raised in Minneapolis. Moved here in 1981. Die hard North Stars fan, didn’t care much for the Kings. Hated those purple unis. Then I started playing hockey out here and my teammates would take m to Kings games. Started to come around, then the year that Luc and Jimmy Carson came, really became a Kings fan. Then cme the Gretzky years and the Stars moving to Dallas, and I was a Kings fan or life. Because they lost thir team my Minny buddies became Kings fans. My pal Mac had a Kings logo on his Harley. Then came the Wild. How great is it to have 2 teams you love? My wife is not too crazy about it, since I watch a game almost every night. Sorry to get so long winded, but with the Kings winning the Cup nd the Wild signing Parise and Suter can’t wait for October. NFL and NFLPA, don’t fuck this up.

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