Minnesota Wild fire coach Dean Evason amid disappointing start, hire John Hynes

The Minnesota Wild fired coach Dean Evason and assistant Bob Woods on Monday amid a disappointing start and a seven-game losing streak.

The Wild later announced that former Nashville Predators and New Jersey Devils coach John Hynes will become the seventh head coach in franchise history.

The Wild made the playoffs in each of Evason's first three full seasons in Minnesota, topping 100 points the past two seasons, though he never got out of the first round.

The firing came after the Wild got off a 5-10-4 record this season. They are on an 0-5-2 slide, including failing to pick up a win in Sweden.

The Wild are hampered in what they can do to turn around the team because they have more than $14 million in dead cap space from the 2021 buyouts of Zach Parise and Ryan Suter.

Minnesota Wild head coach Dean Evason was fired on Monday after a 5-10-4 start.
Minnesota Wild head coach Dean Evason was fired on Monday after a 5-10-4 start.

What is wrong with the Minnesota Wild this season?

The Wild finished with 113 points two seasons ago and 103 points last season. But their numbers are down across the board. They rank 22nd in offense, 31st in defense and last overall in penalty killing this season.

Matt Boldy has one goal this season after getting 31 last season. All-Star Kirill Kaprizov has only two even-strength goals. Defenseman Jared Spurgeon has no points in six games since returning from an injury.

Goaltender Filip Gustavsson, who signed a three-year contract, has seen his numbers drop from last season's 2.10 goals-against average and .931 save percentage to 3.94, .881. Goalie Marc-Andre Fleury's numbers are significantly down.

The Wild will also be without forward Ryan Hartman for the next two games after a suspension for tripping the Detroit Red Wings' Alex DeBrincat.

Who is John Hynes, the new Minnesota Wild coach?

Wild general manager Bill Guerin knows Hynes from their time in the Pittsburgh Penguins organization, where Hynes coached the team's American Hockey League affiliate.

Hynes, 48, most recently was Predators head coach, getting fired after missing the playoffs. But he made the playoffs for three seasons before that. He went 134-96-18 in 248 games with Nashville.

Hynes also was head coach of the Devils from 2015-19, going 150-159-45 in 354 games.

He has experience working with younger players as head coach of USA Hockey’s National Team Development Program. He won a gold medal with the USA as an assistant coach at the 2004 world junior championships.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Dean Evason fired as Minnesota Wild coach; John Hynes hired