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Tiggsy
09-27-2012, 04:19 PM
I wouldn't be surprised by a top half finish either.

If that happens, who do they kick out of the top half? UNO or Tech likely?

UpNorthHockey
09-27-2012, 05:14 PM
Nah, for the first time in several years, our top scorers (such as they are) are coming back. There's a new coach with a new system. Teddy Blueger is probably the most promising recruit at MSU since Backes. I'm not expecting a top-half finish, but we'll be better than 11th this year.

Blueger is a hot property.....I guess I'm still smarting from the drumming Bemidji gave Tech last season. Good to hear that the Mavs are bouncing back.

mnstate0fhockey
09-27-2012, 05:24 PM
If that happens, who do they kick out of the top half? UNO or Tech likely?

They would have to probably pass both. I have Mankato in my bottom third, but I can realistically see them finishing anywhere between 6-10. I think they have improved enough where I don't think they will be battling to stay out of the cellar. They have a great sophomore class, and some really good incoming recruits. If they get an immediate impact from their freshmen, they could challenge for the last home ice spot IMO.

Biddco
09-27-2012, 06:36 PM
4-11 is a total crapshoot. You could see any team fall within those spots. Here are my picks:

1. UMTC Easiest pick sadly...
2. UND - Typical UND team, they reload
3. DU Same for DU
4. Wisconsin - You'd figure a team wouldn't be terrible three years in a row...right?
5. MTU - I think they build off of last year and get home ice
6. SCCC - Still a home ice team...not buying them placing in the top four like some.
7. UMD - I just don't think we will get home ice. I'll be hoping and rooting for it but I think goaltending will do us in.
8. MSU-M Should be much improved
9. UNO - Putting them this low feels wrong.
10. CC - ... We shall see.
11. BSU - What talent do they have left?
12. UAA - Second easiest pick

burd
09-27-2012, 07:08 PM
I'm really gonna miss this conference. I love the dark side, the strength, conference wide, the historic rivalries, even the perpetual lies from gopher fans.

Slap Shot
09-27-2012, 07:17 PM
Stolen from a UND fan at another board regarding UM's place in the WCHA this year:


1. UM: Defending league champs have most players back. Everyone is questioning the goaltending, but Kent Patterson put up very average, if not below average, numbers for much of last year (.894 save percentage from Thanksgiving on). The new goalie won’t see a lot of rubber and shouldn’t have a difficult time replicating that.

fwiw of course, but it is something I didn't realize nor consider when thinking about the future in net.

mnstate0fhockey
09-27-2012, 07:28 PM
Stolen from a UND fan at another board regarding UM's place in the WCHA this year:



fwiw of course, but it is something I didn't realize nor consider when thinking about the future in net.

It's from Schlossman's picks, and he's absolutely right. Patterson started out red hot, but cooled off as the season progressed. The Gopher's team defense played a large part in our defensive success last season IMO. If Wilcox only sees ~20-25 shots a game (last season opponents averaged 24.9), I don't think the Gophers see much drop-off defensively.

mnstate0fhockey
09-27-2012, 07:33 PM
Pretty good scouting report on Wilcox from @SiouxTradition

Adam Wilcox, G, Minnesota
Vitals: 6' 0" - 183 lbs - 11/26/1992
Hometown: South St. Paul, MN
Previous Team: Tri-City Storm (USHL)

Wilcox is a South St. Paul native who returns home following two years in the USHL. He spent the 2010-11 season with the Green Bay Gamblers, where he posted a 2.20 GAA and .922 Save Percentage in 24 games. He played in nine games with Green Bay (2.27 GAA, .918 Sv %) during the 2011-12 season before being traded to the Tri-City Storm. In 34 games with the Storm, the 2011 draft pick of the Tampa Bay Lightning (6th Round, 178th Overall) produced a 2.91 GAA and .916 Save Percentage.

Wilcox is an average sized, athletic goaltender who displays good quickness and agility. He controls his rebounds well and is not afraid to engage in an aggressive brand of goaltending. With the cast of returning players Minnesota will be able to surround him with, it will not be too often that Wilcox will be called upon to stand on his head and steal a win. He does, however, possess the ability to step into the goaltending spotlight as a freshman and deliver key minutes for a team poised to make a run at a national championship.

<a href="http://bit.ly/UvzBog">Read Article</a>

Stauber1
09-27-2012, 10:43 PM
Stolen from a UND fan at another board regarding UM's place in the WCHA this year:



fwiw of course, but it is something I didn't realize nor consider when thinking about the future in net.

Patterson was a quality goaltender last year. Nothing more, nothing less.
He made the majority of saves he was supposed to make. His positioning and rebound control was good. But he didn't make many of those dynamic saves or steal any game last year. There weren't many (if any) games MN won last year where you could say, "that was Patterson's win", but there were a couple where you could say "If the goaltending hadn't struggled so much, MN would have won".

Don't get me wrong, I'd be thrilled to have the consistency in goal this year that we had last year. Just because with the skaters MN has returning, consistency is all it *should* take to make the Gophers a premier team in the nation. But I think a big chunk of that consistency last year had more to do with team defense than it did with the elite play of Patterson.

huskyfan
09-28-2012, 08:09 AM
I'm really gonna miss this conference. I love the dark side, the strength, conference wide, the historic rivalries, even the perpetual lies from gopher fans.

this. Except for St, Clouud and DU.

Fighting Sioux 23
09-28-2012, 08:36 AM
It's from Schlossman's picks, and he's absolutely right. Patterson started out red hot, but cooled off as the season progressed. The Gopher's team defense played a large part in our defensive success last season IMO. If Wilcox only sees ~20-25 shots a game (last season opponents averaged 24.9), I don't think the Gophers see much drop-off defensively.

While I think Minnesota will see somewhat of a drop defensively, the Gophers should more than make up for that drop offensively. Last year, Minnesota had a +1.30 goal differential (3.60 for/2.30 against). My guess is this year's squad is closer to about a +1.50-1.75 (4.00-4.25 for/~2.50 against).

Tiggsy
09-28-2012, 08:50 AM
I'm really gonna miss this conference. I love the dark side, the strength, conference wide, the historic rivalries, even the perpetual lies from gopher fans.

Lies? Like about out traditions or how everyone owes a hockey debt of gratitude to our state or program? Not sure you want to go there because it's beyond reproach. Just ask around. :D

goldy_331
09-28-2012, 10:51 AM
Lies? Like about out traditions or how everyone owes a hockey debt of gratitude to our state or program? Not sure you want to go there because it's beyond reproach. Just ask around. :D

Jdubbs would be happy to tell him!

SanTropez
09-28-2012, 10:57 AM
Jdubbs would be happy to tell him!

Yep.

Where is he anyway? I figured he had his timeout and would come back by now.

Koho
09-28-2012, 11:32 AM
While I think Minnesota will see somewhat of a drop defensively, the Gophers should more than make up for that drop offensively. Last year, Minnesota had a +1.30 goal differential (3.60 for/2.30 against). My guess is this year's squad is closer to about a +1.50-1.75 (4.00-4.25 for/~2.50 against).

Why would they drop defensively? Goaltending is the only valid argument I think you could make. And that is an unknown. They are stacked at D, adding two big time freshman, and their Offense should be able to control the puck for decent periods of time. Sure, a couple forwards they lost were good two-way players, but many of the returning forwards should be improving in that area too.

SanTropez
09-28-2012, 11:35 AM
Why would they drop defensively? Goaltending is the only valid argument I think you could make. And that is an unknown. They are stacked at D, adding two big time freshman, and their Offense should be able to control the puck for decent periods of time. Sure, a couple forwards they lost were good two-way players, but many of the returning forwards should be improving in that area too.

I think he is implying goaltending, that's what I took from it anyway. We'll see, I think the Gophs will be just fine with Wilcox/Shibrowski

goldy_331
09-28-2012, 11:43 AM
I think he is implying goaltending, that's what I took from it anyway. We'll see, I think the Gophs will be just fine with Wilcox/Shibrowski

I heard that Johnson was praising either Coyne or LaPrade recently and saying that he (whichever he was talking about) could challenge the other two. Justin thought the kid was looking really good in early practices.

Fighting Sioux 23
09-28-2012, 11:50 AM
Why would they drop defensively? Goaltending is the only valid argument I think you could make. And that is an unknown. They are stacked at D, adding two big time freshman, and their Offense should be able to control the puck for decent periods of time. Sure, a couple forwards they lost were good two-way players, but many of the returning forwards should be improving in that area too.

It's just my opinion, but I think Minnesota will have more focus on the offensive side that will take away some of their focus on the D-side. Couple that with a question mark at goal, and I see their overall numbers being not quite as good as last season. I see Minnesota playing more 5-3 type games than 3-2 type games. Also, I see Minnesota building up larger leads, which often lead to lapses defensively.

I really see this Gopher team as being similar to the Gopher teams of old (read: 2002-2007). They focused heavily on offense and were very good at scoring goals, but they would let in their fair share as well.

Tiggsy
09-28-2012, 12:19 PM
Yep.

Where is he anyway? I figured he had his timeout and would come back by now.

I know. MGOBlueHockey is just waiting for him in the B1G thread.

gopher wes
10-02-2012, 11:11 AM
Pretty good scouting report on Wilcox from @SiouxTradition

Adam Wilcox, G, Minnesota
Vitals: 6' 0" - 183 lbs - 11/26/1992
Hometown: South St. Paul, MN
Previous Team: Tri-City Storm (USHL)

Wilcox is a South St. Paul native who returns home following two years in the USHL. He spent the 2010-11 season with the Green Bay Gamblers, where he posted a 2.20 GAA and .922 Save Percentage in 24 games. He played in nine games with Green Bay (2.27 GAA, .918 Sv %) during the 2011-12 season before being traded to the Tri-City Storm. In 34 games with the Storm, the 2011 draft pick of the Tampa Bay Lightning (6th Round, 178th Overall) produced a 2.91 GAA and .916 Save Percentage.

Wilcox is an average sized, athletic goaltender who displays good quickness and agility. He controls his rebounds well and is not afraid to engage in an aggressive brand of goaltending. With the cast of returning players Minnesota will be able to surround him with, it will not be too often that Wilcox will be called upon to stand on his head and steal a win. He does, however, possess the ability to step into the goaltending spotlight as a freshman and deliver key minutes for a team poised to make a run at a national championship.

<a href="http://bit.ly/UvzBog">Read Article</a>
This write up gives me the sense that Wilcox is maybe a little Stalock-esque with the "aggressive" comment. I know nothing about the guy, is that true?