First of all, I hope everyone has a happy and safe Memorial Day weekend whether you travel or spend it at home with some loved ones. Both Dan and I are taking the weekend off (although there are a couple posts scheduled to run today and tomorrow) to recharge our batteries before going full steam into draft coverage. It's something both of us can't wait for and have worked our butts off with scouting, reading and talking with other sources.
(Speaking of hard work and draft coverage, pick up Future Consideration's Draft Guide. I've spent most of the last few days with my nose in it and there are tons of helpful little nuggets and pieces of information from experts across the world, including Dan.)
The biggest thing Wild-related this weekend (unless Mikael Granlund signs again...RIP Granlund Watch) is that Saint John (Charlie Coyle and Zack Phillips) have a chance to repeat as Memorial Cup champions. If they win tonight against Shawinigan (the game is LIVE on NHL Network at 6 p.m. CT) the Sea Dogs face London, who beat Saint John 5-3 last week, for the title.
More thoughts and links after the jump...
Slightly behind the Memorial Cup is Star Tribune beat writer Michael Russo guest-hosting on KFAN today from noon-3 p.m. That should be a good chance to get some Wild and NHL questions asked like that Granlund guy who was just signed or if Jonas Brodin's World Championship performance should put him in the top Wild prospect discussion. Basically things that don't get answered by the hockey guys on radio in this market. It's not a shot, I'm happy there are folks at 1500 and KFAN who discuss hockey but unless someone stupidly gives Dan and myself a radio show prospects aren't being discussed.
-There's a FRB post from Monday on Zdeno Chara wearing Pavol Demitra's jersey to honor him but Tomas Kopecky goes one step further honoring his late Slovakian national teammate. (Puck Daddy)
-With Fox Sports North studio host/Gopher play-by-play guy Anthony LaPanta taking the Wild job, Wolves play-by-play guy Tom Hanneman is taking over LaPanta's studio gig. Here's hoping the Timberwolves and FSN learned from the experience and don't appoint Paul Allen or Kevin Gorg as their new NBA announcer. (Star Tribune)
-Tony over at Jacque Lemaire's Trap has come out of his collegiate-enforced hiatus to start ranking the Wild prospects. Here are the honorable mentions through #8 and #7-#5.
-Tom Powers of the St. Paul Pioneer Press jumped on the Parise bandwagon saying that Minnesota fans should start cheering for New Jersey.
-Bryan Reynolds has a rebuttal over at SB Nation Minnesota saying Stanley Cup captains in hockey don't
-A Marek Zidlicky article with New Jersey that touts his importance (or) a Mickey Mouse player with a Mickey Mouse organization. Depends on how you feel about things. (Newark Star-Ledger)
-Sid Hartman has an interesting take on Mikael Granlund as only Sid Hartman can...in video form.
Besides the fact that this Sidcast raised the healthy debate over whether or not Sid is above the law. Anyways, a rebuttal could be its own blog but Hartman at this point is who he is - a 93 year-old columnist and institution at the Star Tribune. If you're a hockey fan first, you know Sid Hartman is not going to have much positive to say unless he can go Don Cherry (another nice parallel) with Minnesotans. He's a basketball guy (sorry Gopher hockey) who owned the Minneapolis Lakers in a time when that was not frowned upon (and to think, biased news networks are the worst of our problems).
In response, the Minnesota Wild unleashed their inner-LA Kings on Twitter.
-Missed this in the Granlund Watch but State of Hockey News has their take on Finnish Baby Jesus signing.
-Same goes for Team of 18,001.