The Minnesota Wild
The Minnesota Wild are a professional hockey team in St. Paul, MN playing in the Central Division of the Western Conference in the National Hockey League. The Wild just finished their season with a tough 4 games to 1 loss in the first round of the beloved Stanley Cup Playoffs. The Wild were ousted by a gritty Winnipeg Jets team who’ve had a resurgence back into the NHL in recent years. The knockout game ended in a disappointing 5-0 loss to the Jets.
The Wild are the second NHL team to represent St. Paul, Minnesota after the Minnesota North Stars; the Stars left town for Dallas in 1993.
The Wild have been around since the year 2000 and have had moderate success in the NHL playoffs. They have yet to bring a Stanley Cup to St. Paul and the Excel Center. The Wild are led by Left Winger Zack Parise and Centerman Eric Staal while being back-ended by goaltender Devin Dubnyk. Mikko Koivu is the team captain and the coach of the Minnesota Wild is Bruce Boudreau.
The Wild have the ninth-best attendance rating in the entire National Hockey League. They have made it as far as the Western Conference Finals in their inaugural playoff appearance during the 2002-2003 season. The team’s colors are Iron Range Red, Forest Green, Harvest Gold, and Minnesota Wheat. The Minnesota Wild franchise’ leading scorer is Mikko Koivu followed by Marion Gaborik. Hall of Fame Coach Jacques Lemaire is the winningest coach in Wild team history.
St. Paul’s Xcel Energy Center
The Xcel Energy Center is the home of the Minnesota Wild National Hockey League Team. The Xcel Center, based in St. Paul, Minnesota holds a capacity of just over 18,000 fans for a Minnesota Wild game and was officially opened for business on Sept. 29th, 2000. The “X” as St. Paul locals call it was built on the site of the demolished St. Paul Civic Center.
The X was named best overall sports venue in the United States by ESPN Magazine in 2004. It saw its 10 millionth visitor come through its gates in July of 2007. The X also hosted Vote For Change in October of 2004 headed by Bruce Springsteen, Neil Young, and John Fogerty.
The Excel Energy Center was the hosting site of the Republican National Convention in 2008 from Sept. 1 thru 4th. During 2010 an ESPN Magazine piece said that a Minnesota Wild game at the Xcel Center in St. Paul was named as the 3rd best stadium experience in all of North America.
The X was kind enough to allow the Minnesota Lynx of the WNBA to use the arena while the Lynx’ home Target Center was being renovated until the end of the 2017 season.
It is clear that the Minnesota Wild and the Excel Energy Center have enjoyed a splendid partnership over the last two decades and you can bet that won’t change and even better things are to come moving forward into the future.
***BONUS*** Summit Avenue is known for some of the most iconic buildings in Minnesota such as the governors mansion and St. Paul’s Cathedral but did you know it is also known for having the most consecutive Victorian style houses in America?