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POSTED ON Thursday, 05.26.2016 / 6:58 PM CT
By Evan Sporer - Digital Content Coordinator / View From the Lighthouse

Deb Kostka has family in Canada, so she said she had been following the story surrounding the wild fires raging in Alberta for weeks.

Then, she said, when she read the article written by Danielle and Jared Spurgeon about how the fires affected Danielle's family, it was easy to place herself in that situation.

"It really hits home," Kostka said.

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POSTED ON Wednesday, 05.25.2016 / 9:00 AM CT
By Evan Sporer - Digital Content Coordinator / View From the Lighthouse

Over the next few months, Wild.com will take a closer look at some of the areas of the Minnesota Wild's 2015-16 season, from players, to systems, and everything between.

Of all the Minnesota Wild's strengths and deficiencies during the 2015-16 season, there was perhaps no trend harder to explain than its lack of success in the new three-on-three overtime format.

The Wild lost 11 games that went past regulation this season, nine of which were decided in the three-on-three. Of the 10 games Minnesota played that were decided in overtime, it won once. That's a 414-point drop in winning percentage from the Wild's pace in games decided in regulation.

So something was amiss, but the answer isn't as simple as, the Wild played that much worse.

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POSTED ON Monday, 05.23.2016 / 11:08 AM CT
By Evan Sporer - Digital Content Coordinator / View From the Lighthouse

Minnesota Wild prospect Reid Duke scored, but the Brandon Wheat Kings lost their opening game at the Memorial Cup on Saturday, 5-3, against Rouyn-Noranda Huskies.

Duke, a sixth round pick in the 2014 NHL Entry Draft, scoring 2:44 into the first period to give the Wheat Kings a 1-0 lead.

But the Huskies would score the next five goals though, and took a 5-1 lead into the third period.

Photo via Rob Wallator

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POSTED ON Sunday, 05.22.2016 / 3:48 PM CT
By Evan Sporer - Digital Content Coordinator / View From the Lighthouse

Defenseman Matt Dumba and Canada defeated Finland on Sunday, 2-0, to win gold at the 2016 IIHF World Championship.

Dumba had a shot on goal in 5:03 of ice time. Canada outshot Finland for the game 33-16. Edmonton Oilers goaltender Cam Talbot stopped all 16 of Finland's shots.

Oilers forward Connor McDavid gave Canada a 1-0 lead midway through the first period. That score would stay that way for virtually the rest of the game, until Colorado Avalanche forward Matt Duchene added an empty-net goal with less than a second remaining in regulation.

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POSTED ON Saturday, 05.21.2016 / 3:07 PM CT
By Evan Sporer - Digital Content Coordinator / View From the Lighthouse

Forwards Mikko Koivu and Mikael Granlund each recorded an assist, and Finland defeated Russia 3-1 on Saturday in the semifinal round of the 2016 IIHF World Championship.

Finland fell behind 1-0 under three minutes into the first period when Sergei Shirokov scored on a rebound for Russia.

The score remained that way until just over five minutes into the second period, when Sebastian Aho scored on the power play to tie the game at 1-1. Granlund picked up the primary assist, his eighth of the tournament, second among all skaters. Granlund is now tied for second overall in the tournament with 12 points.

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POSTED ON Friday, 05.20.2016 / 4:30 PM CT
By Evan Sporer - Digital Content Coordinator / View From the Lighthouse

The Minnesota Wild is made up of hockey players from across the globe. One of those players and his family was personally affected by the forest fires in McMurray, Alberta. Now, he and his teammates are doing their part to help give back.

The Alberta forest fires, which began May 1, have displaced thousands of local residents, causing some to lose their homes and seek shelter. Over 80,000 evacuees have been registered in two-plus weeks.

Among those affected include the parents of Danielle Spurgeon, wife of Wild defenseman Jared Spurgeon. Her parents lost their west Edmonton home in the fires.

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POSTED ON Friday, 05.20.2016 / 9:00 AM CT
By Evan Sporer - Digital Content Coordinator / View From the Lighthouse

Over the next few months, Wild.com will take a closer look at some of the areas of the Minnesota Wild's 2015-16 season, from players, to systems, and everything between.

When Erik Haula found his stride this season, the Minnesota Wild began to click.

Like the makeup of the Wild, Haula embodies many of characteristics Minnesota feels are core to its identity: A fast skater, aggressively irritating defensively, and, hard to play against.

Haula skated in 76 games for the 2015-16 season, a career high, but really found his niche when former interim Head Coach John Torchetti took over in February.

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POSTED ON Thursday, 05.19.2016 / 3:41 PM CT
By Evan Sporer - Digital Content Coordinator / View From the Lighthouse

Forward Mikael Granlund had two goals, linemate Mikko Koivu had two assists, and Finland won its quarterfinal game against Denmark, 5-1, at the 2016 IIHF World Championship.

Granlund scored Finland's first and last goal. He broke a scoreless tie 14:29 into the first period when he snuck a shot just inside the far post and under the crossbar. Koivu picked up the primary assist.

Finland led 2-0 before Denmark cut its deficit back to a goal midway through the second period.

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POSTED ON Thursday, 05.19.2016 / 9:00 AM CT
By Evan Sporer - Digital Content Coordinator / View From the Lighthouse

Over the next few months, Wild.com will take a closer look at some of the areas of the Minnesota Wild's 2015-16 season, from players, to systems, and everything between.

Perhaps the only thing more comforting than the 22-minute-plus safety net Jared Spurgeon provides the Minnesota Wild game-in and game-out is the stability that comes with Spurgeon's recent contract extension.

Spurgeon, who has blossomed into one of the NHL's most consistent and reliable defensemen, had the efficiency acknowledged this season when he signed a four-year contract extension that kicks in the upcoming NHL year.

Though he had a career offensive season, Spurgeon's contributions — both offensive and defensive — extend far past what's in an average box score.

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POSTED ON Wednesday, 05.18.2016 / 9:00 AM CT
By Evan Sporer - Digital Content Coordinator / View From the Lighthouse

Over the next few months, Wild.com will take a closer look at some of the areas of the Minnesota Wild's 2015-16 season, from players, to systems, and everything between.

Though it found itself near the bottom-third in the NHL in scoring, a stout defensive year saw the Wild finish 10th in five-on-five goal differential this season, an indication of some of the even-strength success the Wild was able to sustain.

Year-to-year, the Wild's even-strength scoring dipped, from 165 goals-for two seasons ago, to 139 in 2015-16.

A few likely culprits for the decline included a drop in shooting percentage (8.5 to 7.6) and lower puck possession numbers (a 51.4% score-adjusted shot-attempts percentage to 48.0%).

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