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  • No Record Is Safe From Kirill Kaprizov

    Kayla Hynnek

    Kirill Kaprizov has only played 167 games in the NHL, but he has already broken numerous Minnesota Wild franchise records. He’s already tackled the basics: Most points in a season, most goals and assists in one season, and most goals and points by a rookie. However, while there are still plenty of records to break, none seem safe from Kaprizov.


    Kaprizov, 25, has already rewritten the Wild’s record books, and he’s on pace to break nearly all of them if he continues to play the way he is now.


    Kaprizov’s scoring pace is becoming ridiculous, and no one in Minnesota has seen a goal-scoring machine like him since Marian Gaborik left in 2009. Over the weekend, Kaprizov set three more records:

    23rd player to collect 200 points in 167 games or less in NHL history (T-22nd fastest)

    The fifth-fastest left wing in NHL history to reach 200 points

    And the fastest player in Minnesota Wild history to reach 200 points

    Those numbers are staggering, and there’s no doubt he will break countless more records. It will take some time, but he’s on pace to break Gaborik’s all-time Minnesota goals record (219). He could also take a crack at Mikko Koivu’s assist record (504).


    Despite leaving as a free agent after the 2008-09 season, Gaborik still has Minnesota’s goals record. He accomplished the feat in 502 games played for Minnesota. He also ended up with 437 total points in a Wild sweater. Gaborik was Minnesota’s first bonafide star. But now, Kaprizov is breaking all of his records.


    Kaprizov already ranks 17th in points in Wild history, and he’s only going to continue to climb those ranks.


    Granted, the Wild have only existed for 22 years and don’t have the most impressive all-time stats. They also have never had an Alex Ovechkin-like goal scorer before. But Kaprizov has made easy work of breaking franchise records in a way no player has done before.


    Barring any injuries or missed time, Kaprizov should be able to break all the records that he hasn’t already. He could easily take the power-play goals record; he’s already 7th on the Wild’s list with 31 tallies with the extra man. Zach Parise currently holds the record with 69 nice goals.


    Kaprizov is on track to make the top ten in even-strength goals this year. He currently has 62 tallies with both teams at full strength; Gaborik is at the top of that list with 154 goals 5v5. Wes Walz is tenth on the list with 67 even-strength goals.


    Depending on if Kaprizov spends most of his career in Minnesota, he has a good chance to take over Mikko Koivu’s all-time points record. Koivu scored 709 points for the Wild in 1,028 games played. Considering Kaprizov is already at 201 points in 167 games, he could snatch that record easily.


    I lied. There is one record that is safe. Penalty minutes. He has 67 penalties in minutes this year, so he’s not even close to making that list. Matt Johnson is the unfortunate one who holds this record with 698 total penalty minutes.


    There are a bunch of random records that Kaprizov can break if he’s feeling greedy. I doubt anyone knew that Kirill was set to be the fifth-fastest left wing in NHL history to reach 200 points. He’ll be breaking a random record every month with how good he is.


    Having those play-making linemates helps any scorer, and the Wild are lucky that Kaprizov and Mats Zuccarello have formed such a bond. They are constantly setting each other up and wreaking havoc on the ice.


    Minnesota only has Zuccarello signed through next season, but he could possibly stick around and help Kaprizov break more records.


    The Wild still haven’t filled their No. 1 center role. But guys like Kaprizov make their teammates better, and that’s what he’s doing for anyone he skates with. Ryan Hartman had a career year last season being the 1C, no doubt due to having Kaprizov and Zuccarello as linemates. Newcomer Sam Steel has taken over the role while Hartman was injured, and he has also been racking up the points. He’s got 13 points this year and five in his last three games.


    If Kaprizov is going to keep producing points, the power-play unit has to stay deadly. He’s already leading the Wild with 13 power play points this season. The current power play unit is the best we’ve seen recently, so Kaprizov will keep climbing those all-time power-play points and goals records.


    Kaprizov is the kind of player you build a team around. If Bill Guerin continues to stack this team, there’s no ceiling to Kaprizov’s greatness. It helps to have a winning team too, and the Wild have recently found their groove.


    Records are meant to be broken, and Kirill Kaprizov is on his way to breaking all kinds of records for Minnesota. In time, he could be atop nearly every relevant and irrelevant record for the Wild.

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