Penguins

Kovacevic: This could have been you, Penguins

What a sorry mess this was.

And it could have been all yours, Pittsburgh. It almost was.

The door to the visiting coaches' room at Consol Energy Center was closed late Tuesday night, crammed with Minnesota front-office officials and the crumbling remains of Mike Yeo's tenure as the Wild's coach. If he wasn't getting fired after this one, a 7-2 tapdance by the visibly bemused Penguins, then it surely will come soon. This wasn't the first strike. The Wild have lost six in a row, 14 of 16 and are way out of the Western playoff race despite a seriously rich roster.

And by rich, I'm talking money, not talent or heart. More on that in a bit.

As the bigwigs filed out of the office one by one, only Yeo was paraded before the firing squad that was a handful of us reporter types. He was walked over to a sponsored screen in the hallway, and we gathered around to ask, in essence, why his team looked as if it would rather have been shoveling snow unclothed in a St. Paul blizzard than playing hockey.

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