Suter, Parise express support for Yeo

  • Article by: RACHEL BLOUNT , Star Tribune
  • Updated: May 14, 2014 - 5:32 AM

Suter, Parise support their coach, whose three-year contract is running out.

hide

Minnesota Wild head coach Mike Yeo.

If it were up to Ryan Suter, Wild coach Mike Yeo would have a contract extension on his desk already. Shortly after the Wild’s 2-1 loss to Chicago in the deciding Game 6 of their playoff series, the veteran defenseman praised the team’s third-year coach for the way he guided the Wild through new territory.

“He did a great job,’’ Suter said of Yeo, whose three-year contract is set to expire with the season’s end. “There were times when the wheels could have come off, and he kept it together. He was always levelheaded.

”I think he did a great job, and I think we’re going to have a bright future with him.’’

Neither Wild General Manager Chuck Fletcher nor owner Craig Leipold has offered hints as to whether Yeo will remain as coach. But in his first time leading a team to the second round of the NHL playoffs, Yeo won praise for his cool handling of the Wild throughout a seven-game victory over Colorado and a six-game defeat by Chicago.

The contracts of the entire coaching staff end with the end of this season.

With reddened eyes and a voice cloaked in sadness, Yeo thanked the Wild fans after the game and spoke of how confident he was that his team would win. The NHL’s youngest coach at age 40, he was unable to describe how he felt when Patrick Kane’s winning goal slipped past Wild goalie Ilya Bryzgalov, and he couldn’t find words to express how he has grown as a coach through the playoff run.

“I don’t know,’’ Yeo said. “I’d have to reflect on that. What it’s done for me is make me realize this group, what they’re made of.’’

Much of Yeo’s postgame remarks centered on his pride in his players, his fulfillment in seeing the advances they made this season and his pain at the loss. Several players, including assistant captains Suter and Zach Parise, returned the compliments.

“I think [all the coaches] did a good job,’’ Parise said. “We were prepared. We made adjustments when we needed to make adjustments, and we switched lines when we needed to.

“I think when you go through the playoffs, when you go through the first and second rounds like we did, you’re bound to become closer as a team and a unit. I think we did that. We grew. We raised the expectations.’’

Yeo’s job status was a hot topic late in the regular season, when the team staggered through March before righting itself and making a playoff run. Throughout the playoffs, the Wild developed a persona as a fearless, energetic and persistent team.

Behind the bench, Yeo maintained his composure and kept his team on the emotional middle ground, allowing it just enough joy in its triumphs and guiding it quickly past its stumbles. He set a calm and confident tone for a team heavy with young players and veterans with limited playoff experience. He also shepherded the development of players such as Erik Haula, whose talent shined even brighter in the postseason.

After Game 4 of the Chicago series, Yeo was asked if he had taken any time to reflect on what his team had accomplished thus far. “I’m not thinking of that at all,’’ he said. “I’m not trying to reflect on anything except the fact that I’m proud and excited that we’re still going here. We’re very determined to keep going forward.’’

Suter, though, had some thoughts on that topic after the game. “I think Chuck has done a very good job of changing the culture here,’’ he said. “We expect to win now. We put that pressure on ourselves.

“It says a lot about [Yeo] and the GM, the way they handled this year. There were a lot of ups and downs, dark days, and we would always come out of it. It says a lot about those guys, and also the group of guys.’’

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Tampa 12:05 PM
Philadelphia
LA Clippers 12:00 PM
Chicago
Cleveland 2:30 PM
Houston
Golden State 5:00 PM
Boston
Philadelphia 5:00 PM
Indiana
Portland 5:00 PM
Sacramento
Charlotte 5:00 PM
Orlando
Oklahoma City 5:30 PM
LA Lakers
New Orleans 7:00 PM
Denver
Los Angeles 3:00 PM
Winnipeg
Tampa Bay 4:00 PM
Florida
Columbus 4:00 PM
Pittsburgh
Toronto 6:00 PM
Washington
Anaheim 7:00 PM
Dallas
St. Louis 8:30 PM
Vancouver
SMU 1:00 PM
Connecticut
Quinnipiac 1:00 PM
Manhattan
Fairfield 1:00 PM
Niagara
Marist 1:00 PM
Rider
Iona 1:00 PM
Saint Peters
Oregon State 2:00 PM
California
South Florida 2:00 PM
Houston
Marquette 2:30 PM
Providence
Michigan State 3:00 PM
Wisconsin
Siena 3:30 PM
Monmouth
Pittsburgh 5:30 PM
Wake Forest
Oregon 6:00 PM
Stanford
Purdue 6:30 PM
Ohio State
Arizona State 7:30 PM
Colorado
Washington St 8:30 PM
UCLA
Georgetown 11:00 AM
Providence
Binghamton 12:00 PM
UMBC
Elon 12:00 PM
Hofstra
Virginia Tech 12:00 PM
Boston College
(8) Louisville 12:00 PM
Virginia
Texas 12:00 PM
West Virginia
Creighton 12:00 PM
Villanova
Seton Hall 12:00 PM
Butler
UNC-Wilmington 12:00 PM
Coll of Charleston
(5) Maryland 12:00 PM
(25) Northwestern
Saint Josephs 12:00 PM
La Salle
Louisiana Tech 12:00 PM
TX-San Antonio
Rhode Island 1:00 PM
Massachusetts
Richmond 1:00 PM
VA Commonwealth
Davidson 1:00 PM
Fordham
St Bonaventure 1:00 PM
Duquesne
George Mason 1:00 PM
(22) George Washington
Indiana 1:00 PM
(20) Rutgers
(12) Texas A&M 1:00 PM
LSU
Ole Miss 1:00 PM
(11) Miss State
Clemson 1:00 PM
Pittsburgh
Maine 1:00 PM
New Hampshire
Vermont 1:00 PM
Albany
Quinnipiac 1:00 PM
Monmouth
Saint Peters 1:00 PM
Siena
(4) Notre Dame 1:00 PM
NC State
Wisconsin 1:00 PM
Penn State
Stony Brook 1:00 PM
Hartford
Northeastern 1:00 PM
William & Mary
St Johns 1:00 PM
Xavier
James Madison 1:00 PM
Delaware
Towson 2:00 PM
Drexel
Illinois State 2:00 PM
Bradley
Southern Ill 2:00 PM
Loyola-Chicago
Northern Iowa 2:00 PM
Wichita State
Minnesota 2:00 PM
(17) Iowa
(15) North Carolina 2:00 PM
(16) Duke
Alabama 2:00 PM
Auburn
(9) Florida State 2:00 PM
Miami-Florida
Arkansas 2:00 PM
Missouri
Georgia 2:00 PM
Florida
Dayton 2:00 PM
Saint Louis
Drake 2:05 PM
Missouri State
Colorado 3:00 PM
(10) Arizona State
(19) Stanford 3:00 PM
Oregon
Marquette 3:00 PM
DePaul
Southern Miss 3:00 PM
Texas-El Paso
Vanderbilt 4:00 PM
(6) Tennessee
(2) South Carolina 4:00 PM
(13) Kentucky
Utah 4:00 PM
Arizona
Ohio State 4:00 PM
Nebraska
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Which is your favorite 'return' by a Minnesota athlete?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close