With the addition of free agents Zach Parise and Ryan Suter, the Minnesota Wild are playoff shoe-ins, right?
We'll know in a few months, after the lockout-shortened 48-game schedule ends.
Until then, it's all guesswork as the Wild try to rebound from last year's 35-36-11 campaign, which had Minnesota 14 points out of playoff contention. As of right now, the first game will be against Colorado at XCel Energy Center on Jan. 19, according to the Star Tribune.
The Pioneer Press isn't making any playoff promises, but says with all the additions this year, this Wild team is the deepest in the 12 seasons of the franchise.
Take 'em for what they're worth, but there are several "NHL Power Rankings" out there as the season gets ready for its Jan. 19 start. While most are impressed with the Parise and Suter signings, the prevailing attitude is "wait and see" when it comes to naming Minnesota a playoff team.
Sports Illustrated: Wild No. 10, Pittsburgh No. 1.
Bleacher Report: Wild No. 14, New York Rangers No. 1.
ESPN: Wild No. 15, New York Rangers No. 1.
Are we forgetting something? Oh, yeah. The Wild have Mikael Granlund, the Finnish star who can do this: