3ITB’s Top 33 Wild Players of All Time – #2

SAINT PAUL, MN - NOVEMBER 19: Mikko Koivu #9 of the Minnesota Wild reacts after scoring a game-tying power play goal late in the third period against the St. Louis Blues during the game at the Xcel Energy Center on November 19, 2011 in Saint Paul, Minnesota. (Photo by Bruce Kluckhohn/NHLI via Getty Images)

2. Mikko Koivu – C

11 Seasons,  763 Games,  161 Goals,  395 Assists,  556 Points

Our Captain.

Drafted 6th overall in 2001, he took the slow road to the NHL, spending five years with his hometown team, TPS Turku in the Finnish league, before coming stateside to play for the Wild’s AHL affiliate in Houston during the lost 2004-2005 NHL lockout season.

From there, he joined the Wild, and despite getting off to a hot start, he struggled in his rookie campaign. He followed this up with a solid sophomore season, before he was taken down by a cheap shot from Mattias Ohlund in the 2007-2008 season.

However, this did not stop him and in 2008, after a long period of a rotating captaincy, Jacques Lemaire named Mikko as the first permanent captain of the Wild.  Lemaire must have seen something, because since then, Koivu has finished 1st on the team in points in four different seasons, and 2nd another three times.

While not a fighter, he’s not afraid to play physical (see “Exploding Shoulder”), and has an eye for finding open teammates who can put the puck in the net.  He’s the Wild’ all-time leader in Games, Assists and Points, and second in Goals, Plus/Minus, Short-Handed Goals and Game Winning Goals.

Perhaps it’s his quiet consistency that makes some undervalue what he brings to the team, but there’s no doubt on the impact he’s had while he’s been in Minnesota.

Previously on our list:

Leave a Reply