It was the same old, same old: Minnesota’s hockey team.
Then a few weeks into the 2013-14 season, the Wolves were on the losing end of a four-game losing streak.
Then, a few games into the 2014-15 season, Minnesota fell behind by as many as 12 points in the standings.
And that’s when things started to get really bad.
Minnesota lost six straight games, which would mark the longest streak in franchise history.
So the team had to make some drastic changes to get back to the playoffs.
The team hired the legendary Bob Gainey to coach, and the organization made some major changes.
The biggest changes:The Wolves were not going to be a perennial contender.
But they were not completely done yet.
They were going to have to rebuild.
The rebuild included:The hiring of GaineyAs much as anyone can agree with the idea of hiring Gainey, it was not the right time for the Wolves to hire him.
The Minnesota Wild was in desperate need of a coach.
Gainey had been a successful coach in the American Hockey League, but not the NHL.
The Wolves had one year left on his contract and it was clear the organization did not see the point in giving up that much.
The Wild also did not want to lose the core players that Gainey helped create, like goalie Joonas Korpisalo and forward Mikael Granlund.
The decision was made to move Gainey in early January 2014.
He was hired the next day, and immediately took over the job of the team’s head coach.
He has led Minnesota to the first-ever Stanley Cup Final.
The first steps of the rebuildThe rebuilding process in Minnesota has been long and arduous.
It started with the hiring of a new head coach and general manager in the offseason.
In a move that surprised many people, Gainey was given the job at all.
It was clear that Gaines vision of the Wolves was not what the team needed, but he had the vision to do the job.
The process of the rebuilding took more than a year.
Gaines first season at the helm of the franchise included the hiring, firing and hiring of several key players.
The team went through the rebuilding process a few times over the course of the next four years, but it was done.
The Wolves were in the playoffs for the first time since 2008.
It was an impressive feat for the team.
It showed that the team was not going anywhere.
But there were still a few key issues that needed to be addressed.
Gaines first job with the WolvesThe team’s roster was already solid, but the biggest problem with Gaines tenure was the fact that he had been in the league for more than half of his career.
He had won three Cups, and had become one of the best goalies in the history of the game.
It made the job even more difficult.
But it also showed that he could be a good coach.
The roster of players Gaines brought inThe organization had made the decision to bring in former Minnesota Wild captain Mikael Backlund, who was widely considered one of Gaines best players.
Backlund had been with the team for six years and won two Cups with Minnesota.
He also had experience playing in the National Hockey League.
He won a Stanley Cup in the 2010-11 season and also played for the New York Islanders.
But the Wild needed a player who could compete with players like Backlund.
A deal was reached and the team signed Backlund to a three-year contract in January 2015.
The two parties reached an agreement to keep the Wild together through the end of the season.
Gains first season with the clubGain’s first season in Minnesota was certainly a mixed bag.
Minnesota finished 8-13-1.
It fell to the Philadelphia Flyers in the first round of the playoffs before being swept by the Chicago Blackhawks.
The loss was an embarrassment, but Gaines job was not done.
In his first year with the Minnesota Wild, Gaines team won three straight and finished with the third seed in the Eastern Conference.
The Flyers were looking for a new coach, so Gaines name was brought up.
It seemed like a natural fit for Gaines because he had worked with him in the AHL and was familiar with the Flyers.
Gainers first season was a total bustGains success with the Wild was not enough to satisfy the fans, who felt that Gainies coaching style was not up to par with the game he played in.
Fans also thought that the organization was not building the right culture.
The organization had also lost a number of key players from the team, including captain Mikko Koivu.
The players that were brought in to replace the lost pieces were not able to fill the gaps that Gainys had left in the organization.
Gears first season back in MinnesotaThe team was still on the road and was not ready to take on a new coaching staff, so it took the team