The Minnesota Wild enter the 2022-23 season with big dreams: This team has the potential to contend for a Stanley Cup. But first, Minnesota must get past the first round. Despite 113 points last season, Minnesota failed to win a playoff series for the sixth straight time.
The team is expected to regress a little via their point totals of 101½ on the NHL betting odds. However, given the short line on their playoff odds, the Wild should still finish in the top three of the division. Star forward Kirill Kaprizov is back in the U.S. and ready to build on what has already been a stellar two seasons in the NHL.
And in goal, Marc-Andre Fleury returns. The Wild will need him to be nothing short of a Vezina Trophy contender or their success will be limited.
Let’s check the latest NHL picks, stats, injury reports, and NHL predictions. We’ve plenty of NHL expert picks for you to consider.
Minnesota Wild Current Odds
- To win Stanley Cup: +2000
- To win Western Conference: +800
- To win Central Division: +375
- To make playoffs: Yes -450/ No +325
Player to Watch
While most of the scrutiny will be on Fleury, the Wild acquired Filip Gustavsson to potentially be the team’s franchise goaltender. Gustavsson had a Jekyll-and-Hyde outing in Ottawa. In 2020-21, he posted a 5-1-2 record with a 2.16 goals-against-average (GAA) and .933 save percentage (SV%). At 22 then, he looked like a future star.
But then came last season: Gustavsson got lit up to the tune of 3.55 GAA and a .892 SV%. He went 5-12-1 and was sent back to the AHL. At 24, Gustavsson is still developing, and playing in front of one of the best two-way teams in the Wild can only boost his confidence.
The team does need to improve on its penalty killing, which was 25th in the NHL (76.1%). But on 5-on-5, Minnesota allowed the second-fewest scoring chances and the second-best goal differential (+57).
Player to Watch: G Filip Gustavsson
Matt Boldy may be in for a monster of a sophomore season. The 12th overall pick in the 2019 NHL Entry Draft scored 15 goals and 39 points in 47 games. This included a hat trick against Detroit in his 13th NHL game. Now in his second year, The 21-year-old should see more minutes as he could move up to flank Joel Eriksson Ek on the second line.
Matt Boldy is a power-play star in today’s #mnwild practice. Snipe city
— Michael Russo (@RussoHockey) September 30, 2022
More notably, Boldy’s scoring acumen will be instrumental in a Wild power play that could use a boost. Minnesota finished 18th in power-play percentage (20.5%) last season. The team was outscored by 10 on special teams. If Boldy can help alleviate this issue, the Wild will be an even more profitable team to bet on online.
Breakout Watch: RW Matt Boldy
If they play the 2022-23 NHL season with no special teams, the Wild should be favored to win the Cup. This is arguably the best 5-on-5 team in the league. The issue with Minnesota is its special teams.
The Wild ranked in the bottom half of the NHL in both the power play and penalty kill. Their deficiency was more exposed against St. Louis. The Blues outscored them 8-4 on the man advantage as they ousted them from the playoffs.
Minnesota did not bring in anyone to address this directly. So the team hopes to improve on it intrinsically. If it can do just that while maintaining its elite 5-on-5 form, the Wild could be the dark horse team in the online sportsbook.
Minnesota Wild Team Leaders
Minnesota Wild Team Ranked Stats
Minnesota Wild Team Scorebox
Minnesota Wild Team Injuries
Minnesota Wild Team Schedule/Results
Minnesota Wild Team Standings
Minnesota Wild Team Roster