Just two days after a disappointing first round defeat to the St Louis Blues, fans of the Minnesota Wild are calling for the head of general manager Chuck Fletcher. Earlier today however, the team’s owner Craig Leipold poured cold water on the rumours of Fletcher’s dismissal and offered up a vote of confidence.
The Minneapolis Star Tribune reported this morning that Leipold confirmed Fletcher’s position will remain unchanged for next season, despite the disappointing finish to 2016-17. The Wild had a tremendous regular season, compiling 49 wins and 106 points, but were unable to get past Blues goaltender Jake Allen in the opening round. Key additions by Fletcher like Martin Hanzal and Ryan White from the Arizona Coyotes failed to live up to expectations and now the team has nothing but lost draft picks to show for their efforts.
If Fletcher does indeed stick around in Minnesota, he’ll have his work cut out for him. The team’s aging core of Zach Parise, Mikko Koivu and Ryan Suter will need to be addressed and the upcoming core with players like Mikael Granlund and Nino Niederreiter need new contracts.