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When Minnesota Wild owner Craig Leipold entered the team’s new practice facility a couple of weeks ago Josh Allen Jersey Elite , the organizational motto was staring him in the face.

 

So was the advice he should make a change in the front office, despite his fondness of general manager Chuck Fletcher.

”It’s the first thing you see when you walk in the door: `Good is not good enough,”’ Leipold said. ”I felt that was a signal for me.”

The Wild split with Fletcher after nine seasons and only two playoff series wins, a decision – ”very agonizing,” Leipold said – that the 25-year veteran of NHL management would not have his contract renewed was delivered in a Monday morning meeting.

”I wanted a new set of eyes on this team,” Leipold said.

The Wild have six straight postseason appearances, matching the longest current streak in the Western Conference with the Anaheim Ducks, but they have not reached the second round since 2015. They were only 15-29 in playoff games during Fletcher’s tenure, enough evidence that the roster wasn’t built well enough for all the success the team has enjoyed in the regular season.

”Right now I just don’t see us with this team getting to the championship series. I just don’t see it,” Leipold said. ”I think we’re a good team. I really do, and I just talked to our players about this. They’re a good team, but they’re not good enough right now.”

Since Fletcher stunned the NHL by signing left wing Zach Parise and defenseman Ryan Suter, the market’s most-coveted free agents in 2012, the Wild have been a runaway success on the business side with sellouts at Xcel Energy Center as routine as the aroma of mini donuts and the swish of the skates on the ice. The fans have been frustrated by the postseason plateau http://www.raidersauthorizedshops.com/authentic-p.j.-hall-jersey , though, and Leipold bluntly acknowledged he dismissed Fletcher in part to appease the customers.

”The fans deserve to win one here,” Leipold said. ”This is the state of hockey, and I’m really confident that we’re going to have candidates that are interested in coming here because of our fans, because of our market, because of our team. I’m energized by the opportunity to talk to some of these people.”

Leipold, who purchased the Wild the year before hiring Fletcher, said the move was unrelated to the Wild’s early exit this year. They lost in five games in the first round to the Winnipeg Jets, after being ousted in five games in 2017 by the St. Louis Blues. Last year, Leipold declined to extend Fletcher’s deal.

”My antenna’s been up,” Leipold said. ”Chuck and I have had numerous conversations all year. I wanted to wait until the end of the year to assess everything, to understand how I feel about where we’re going. Are we still in the window to win the Stanley Cup? I believe we are. He believed we are. But my personal feeling was that I wanted someone new to come in and kind of shake it up.”

Leipold said he won’t order a significant rebuild, nor does he believe that’s necessary for postseason progress. He added he would not hire a general manager who recommended a long-haul approach to hoisting the Stanley Cup.

”We were sixth overall two years ago. We were eighth overall this year,” coach Bruce Boudreau said. ”We’ve got an awful lot of good Denard Span Seattle Mariners Jersey , moving parts there. We’ll tweak it a little bit, and we’ll be better.”

The Wild haven’t struggled enough to get a game-changer in the draft, with Matt Dumba in 2012 (seventh) and Mikael Granlund in 2010 (ninth) the only top-10 picks that Fletcher and his staff had. The rival Jets, for example, picked up Patrik Laine with the second overall selection in 2016 and watched him finish second in the NHL with 44 goals in 2017-18 while the team posted the second-best record in the league.

In one way, the Parise-Suter signings for 13 years and $98 million each have worked against the Wild considering they account for 20 percent of their salary cap space and are on the books for seven more seasons. But Suter had a career-high 45 assists, before breaking his right ankle with four games left in the regular season, and Parise was one of the team’s best forwards down the stretch with 12 goals in the last 19 games. He scored in all three playoff games before breaking his sternum.

Trades that didn’t pan out under Fletcher have hurt the Wild more than any free-agent signing or first-round draft pick. Charlie Coyle is all that’s left from the deal that sent defenseman Brent Burns to San Jose in 2011, and Coyle didn’t notch a goal or an assist in the series against the Jets. The trade last summer that sent Jason Pominville and Marco Scandella to Buffalo for Marcus Foligno and Tyler Ennis didn’t wind up helping.

So Fletcher’s successor will eventually go to work on a roster that produced a goal-less streak of 141:27 to end the series with Winnipeg.

”If you look at the teams moving on, the teams that are winning, they’re scoring and playing at a pretty fast pace,” Parise said. ”We’ve got to get to that level.”

This was a bonus win for Sofia Goggia.

Having packed away the World Cup downhill title a day earlier, Goggia claimed victory in the final super-G of the season on Thursday.

Goggia dominated, finishing 0.32 seconds ahead of Viktoria Rebensburg of Germany.

Meanwhile http://www.buccaneersauthorizedshops.com/authentic-jordan-whitehead-jersey , Tina Weirather successfully defended her discipline title.

”It’s crazy because I wasn’t even thinking about this race,” Goggia said. ”After Korea (where she won Olympic downhill gold) I had made winning the downhill title my goal. So I was exhausted yesterday after achieving that.

”But today I felt good and I had hardly any problems on the way down, without any pressure whatsover,” the Italian added. ”This just rounds things off.”

Also, Vincent Kriechmayr made it two wins in two days by taking the final men’s super-G.

In a shortened race, the Austrian finished a narrow 0.04 seconds ahead of Christof Innerhofer, while Aksel Lund Svindal and Thomas Dressen tied for third, 0.08 behind.

Kjetil Jansrud, the Norwegian who had already clinched the season-long discipline title, finished sixth.

Lindsey Vonn was faster than Goggia at the first checkpoint but lost her balance briefly midway down and finished third, 0.53 behind.

”It’s nice to close out the season with a podium in super-G and to end the season on a high note,” said Vonn, who achieved only one other podium result in the discipline this season – a victory in Val d’Isere, France http://www.vikingsauthorizedshops.com/authentic-kendall-wright-jersey , in December.

Vonn’s focus for next season will on breaking Ingemar Stenmark’s record of 86 World Cup wins. Her victory on Wednesday in the downhill was her 82nd.

”I’m four (wins) behind and I feel like I’m in a good place, picking up steam, confident and relatively healthy, so that will be my focus from here on out,” Vonn said.

Weirather finished sixth, while Lara Gut, the only skier who had a chance of catching the skier from Lichtenstein, lost control early in her run.

Ester Ledecka, the surprise Olympic super-G champion, also went out early.

Weirather ended the season with an 86-point advantage over Gut. Anna Veith placed third, 122 points behind.

Weirather’s second title adds to a large family haul that includes seven small crystal globes won by her mother, Hanni Wenzel, three for her uncle, Andreas Wenzel Sam Darnold Jets Jersey , and one by her father, Harti Weirather.

It was the fifth win of Goggia’s World Cup career.

Attacking a course set by her coach Giovanni Rulfi, Goggia bowed to the crowd upon seeing her time in the finish area.

It was a sparse crowd, though, on a day when the temperature dipped to minus-17 degrees C (1 degree F).

”It was a pretty tricky super-G and I tried to ski smart,” Goggia said. ”I told my coach, `Hey Gianluca, you put poetry on the slope today.”’

It was the third career victory for Kriechmayr, who tied with teammate Matthias Mayer to win the downhill on Wednesday.

Jansrud ended the season with an 80-point advantage over Kriechmayr. Svindal was third, 126 points behind.

”It’s been a very good season. I started it off with a victory and managed to get on the podium in most of the other races,” Jansrud said. ”But I’m very happy to have decided the result in Kvitfjell when I look at the results today.”

Counting four of Svindal’s five titles and Jansrud’s third, Norwegians have won the super-G globe for seven straight seasons.

”Seven times in a row is pretty insane,” Jansrud said. ”If there’s a secret I’m not going to say what it is.”

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