The three day Brian Rolston mourning period is officially over. Time to move on.
More Finns, that's what this team needs, I've been saying that for years. So when the Wild signed winger Antti Miettinen to a three year contract on Thursday I was delighted. Now Mikko and Nicklas have someone to share their "What happens in Helsinki stays in Helsinki" stories with.
Antti never really met the high expectations that he had in Dallas, so here's hoping that he can realize them here. Hopefully he can score some goals for the team, which are going to be sorely needed. Here's a breakdown of his NHL career, plus projected numbers for the upcoming season:
2005-06 ~ 70-11-20-31-46
2006-07 ~ 74-11-14-25-38
2007-08 ~ 69-15-19-25-34
2008-09 ~ 80-30-50-80-40
All in all I'm not too upset with the way free agency went for the Wild. To match New Jersey's offer to Rolston would've been foolish for 4 years. Andrew Brunette will replace most of Rolston's production and Antti should replace Demitra.
Where this team clearly upgraded was on defense. Marek Zidlicky and Marc-Andre Bergeron will no doubt make the Wild a more exciting team to watch. Both are touted as offensive defensemen with superior puck carrying ability, although a bit weak in their own zone. So, Wild fans, maybe we'll see more 5-4 games instead of the usual 2-1 tilts.