Sunday, July 26, 2009

The summer of our Discontent (H)

OK, since I run this blog (and nobody else does, at least for now) I get to say what I see fit about the Wild's 2009-2010 schedule.

Here goes nothin'!

The Wild's extremely front-loaded schedule (due to the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver the second half of February) looks like a logistical nightmare. 6 of your first 7 games on the road, multiple games every night of the week at home, a post-Olympic stretch drive that looks like it will be a death march if the Wild are out of the chase by then, and killer road trips in every month except February (when they only play one road game, Feb. 1 at Dallas).

So what's a road fan to do? Go early, I guess!

Anyhow, the Wild's propensity under the old regime for the 'November nadir' (think the 'June Swoon' of baseball's San Francisco Giants) could doom this team for the rest of the season, should they not come thru treacherous, onerous October with at least a .500 level (14 points or better; 7 wins, 7 losses) after their final visit ever to Mellon Arena and their Oct. 31 date at Pittsburgh.

November has never been kind to the Wild. Some of the biggest turkey games ever by the Wild have come during November. Two seasons past, the Columbus Blue Jackets came in the Day after Thanksgiving and thumped the Wild, 4-2, in one of the worst efforts Wild fans had seen in franchise history. The Wild have always struggled in November, and this season will be no exception. The difference being, however, that with the schedule compressed to accomodate the League (and the sport internationally) stopping for two-plus weeks for the Olympic games, there will not be as much opportunity to pick yourselves up and get back in the race after you get down.

Let's hope the Wild remember this as they enter training camp September 11th.

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