The Minnesota Wild were a starless team in need of a big-time jolt to get the franchise back to the point of being worthy of playing in “the State of Hockey.”

The jolts don’t come any bigger than this.

The Wild landed not one but both of the NHL’s top prizes in free agency, signing forward Zach Parise and defenceman Ryan Suter on Wednesday. Each deal is for 13 years and $98 million, according to three people familiar with the contracts who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the team did not release details.

“WE GOT ‘EM!” the Wild announced on their Twitter account early Wednesday afternoon, sending shockwaves across the league and through a devoted fan base that was starting to show signs of apathy after missing the playoffs for a fourth straight season.

Parise, the former New Jersey Devils playmaker, and Suter, who paired with Shea Weber on the Nashville blue line, were regarded the cream of what was a thin free agent crop, and each had spent the past four days poring over numerous offers from several teams before making a decision.

“This is a great day in the history of the Minnesota Wild,” GM Chuck Fletcher said in a conference call.



  1. JoelLeafs says:

    And they still have ~3mil to resign some RFA. Good on Minny.

    How funny would it be if they tanked again next year? Though I doubt that will happen now. Now I really doubt they’d be able to to afford to resign Backstrom next year. Maybe opens up a trade window…

  2. Kyleton says:

    Solid pick ups for the Wild. Over the next couple seasons they will have some bigger salaries come off the books. And with the Cap going up they should be in good shape.

  3. toronto77 says:

    I actually can’t wait to see the Wild play this season!!!

  4. nordiques100 says:

    I think the Wild will save cap space putting Bouchard on LTIR.

    he’s going to try and come back, but concussion issues for 3 years? that’s tough. hope he makes it, but this is one avenue the wild will use to clear cap space should they need it.

    • Shoelesshobo says:

      Minny can usually do good money wise I mean if they were not doing well the Owner would not let Fletcher offer what he did. They have a devoted fan base and they are a hockey town they should do really well.

      • nordiques100 says:

        I said in a previous post, it’s the funniest thing.

        Liepold with I think karmanos and another were all ready to lockout the players in 2005 indefinitely.
        This is when he owned the preds, cried poor, cried about player salaries and cried bankrupcy.
        Today he doles out 196 mil. Hypocrite.

        • reinjosh says:

          Eh 2005 is a long time ago. Things can change in 7 years. But look at this gem of a comment.


          Are you making money? “We’re not making money, and that’s one reason we need to fix our system. We need to fix how much we’re spending right now. [The Wild’s] revenues are fine. We’re down a little bit in attendance, but we’re up in sponsorships, we’re up in TV revenue. And so the revenue that we’re generating is not the issue as much as our expenses. And [the Wild’s] biggest expense by far is player salaries.”

          That was in APRIL! April 11th to be exact. THIS YEAR.

          He complains about player salaries and then goes out and offers the two biggest deals of the year (minus Crosby’s)? Hypocrite is right.

  5. ZillyHoo says:

    Suter Dumba Parise Heatley Granlund Clutterbuck Coyle Brodin Backstrom Harding Koivu!

    Phillips up in a few years.

    Wow, this team looks beautiful. I want a Granlund jersey…

  6. frankinboltonleafs says:

    Is there anyone here who’d want to be a Nashville fan? I’ve hated this UFA thing since its inception. Karma would lead Parise to be a Gomes and Suter a Souray. There shouldn’t be anything but FA’s and compensation if a player chooses not to play for his team. That’s kinda good for the fans who foot the bill in the end. Rant over.

    • 93killer93 says:

      Nashville loses out big here. Not only do they lose Suter for nothing, but now there’s all sorts of reports that Weber wants out since Suter’s gone. They’re best off moving his rights now to a team in the east.

    • nordiques100 says:

      The thing is, they went to a real small market, to a relatively smallish market. Minny is a hockey town though but in the middle of nowhere.

      Schultz went to Edmonton. Jokinen chose Winnipeg. Wideman and Carle, the next two big UFA Dmen went to Calgary and Tampa respectively.

      Big name teams, Philly, LA, Pitt, Detroit, NY, Toronto were shut out.

      Its not like Baseball or Basketball where everyone just goes to Boston or the Yankees or Los Angeles.

      I think thats good for the game. 30 teams really have a legit shot at free agents. Well 29 teams as Toronto doesnt invest in big name free agents.

      Its too bad Nashville got shut out, but who knows. they could keep Weber and it will be not a huge deal then to lose Suter.

    • reinjosh says:

      It sucks to lose Suter, especially since it’s likely Weber’s gone too. Poile better trade him if he doesn’t intend on signing an extension this summer.

      But the player has that right. As much as it hurts to lose Suter, the PReds had their chance to get compensation for him at the deadline but they chose to go for a cup. It happens. It’s all part of the game. If there is one team I’m confident can come back from a loss like this, it’s the Preds.

  7. dumbassdoorman says:

    I am not sure we will see a slew of trades right away, but like most insiders and Gm’s have said the signings now cause talks to heat up. Especially teams that have spent big bucks for new additions, they could be looking to move out money? Here is hoping for some interesting developments to debate

    • reinjosh says:

      It’s been mentioned that there are trade talks now that are at a level they haven’t been at it in a long time. That’s a good thing. Nash and Ryan are likely to be traded. Yandle/Bouwmeester could be traded. Weber could be traded. Burke’s mentioned a lot of these teams that gave out big money to UFA’s are looking for ways to divest themselves of other money so there are thsoe players. Luongo is a pretty fair bet to be traded.

      Could make for a fairly steady summer of hockey news.

      • albertateam says:

        That Wideman trade and signing is looking better now.

        • dumbassdoorman says:

          YA, seems about market value….for sure, and unlike Garisson or carle he is at least proven year after year to be consistant.

          Burke was mebntioning that, I know there are gonna be those claiming I am drinking Kool-aid, but his interview left me caustiously optimistic, for the leafs and league wide action.

        • reinjosh says:

          Yeah it’s looking better for sure. Still not a huge fan of the term but I’m willing to see how he does.

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