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Thursday, July 5, 2012

Wild signs Parise, Suter


What a coup. Signing Zach Parise, and Ryan Suter instantly transforms the Minnesota Wild into one of the NHL's highest profile teams. And makes the Franchise relevant.  Having those two players aboard; guarantees a Winter Classic will be held in Minnesota in the next two years, it guarantees the Wild will be a featured team on NBC; and most importantly it guarantees the Wild will be successful, relevant, and important for at least the next decade. Even if you do not like hockey, you have to be impressed by what this team did yesterday. Never before, has a Minnesota sports team pulled off anything like this.

Other high profile players will now want to join this team. And by taking less money to sign with us, the Wild will have the cap room to continue to add players to this team. With Koivu, Parise, and Suter leading the way, along with the best farm system in the NHL, the Wild, should be a powerhouse for the next decade and beyond.

Minnesota sports-fans finally have a team willing to spend big money to win. These two signings, are the most money any team in Minnesota has ever spent on a free-agent. Both players will make $98 million dollars over the next 13 years. Steve Hutchinson's 7 year, $49 million dollar contract-with the Vikings, was the previous largest contract ever given out to a free-agent, by a Minnesotan team. The Wild doubled that with each player. Some people will say that the Wild overpaid. But, in order to win, you have to be willing to spend money.

Unlike the Pohlads, who have cut the Twins payroll in just their third year in a brand new stadium, Craig Leopold, the Wilds owner was more than willing to spend almost $200 million dollars in one day to make his team relevant and better.

The Wild still have work to do in order to compete for the Stanley Cup. But they have laid a great foundation for success with these two players. It's just nice to see a team try and win a championship in Minnesota. And not rely on the false excuse- that the the Twin Cities are a small market. If the hated Green Bay Packers can win a championship in there small city, then anyone can.

July 4, 2012 was the best day in Minnesota sports since the Twins won the 1991 World Series. Since then, there have been a few close calls and a lot of misery. Let us hope we do not have to wait two decades, for another great moment.

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