Why the Minnesota Gophers Will End Their 20 Year Title Drought
The Minnesota Gophers haven’t won the National title in Men’s Ice Hockey since 2003, but this year they have the best shot they have had during that time period. This article will explain why they will win the 2023 Men’s Ice Hockey national title.
The Gopher’s top line is absolutely insane and loaded with talent. Jimmy Snuggerud was drafted 23rd overall by the St. Louis Blues and possesses the ability to score from anywhere on the ice. He has soft hands and wicked wrist shots with the speed to make defenders shake.
The top line is centered by Logan Cooley, a third overall pick by the Arizona Coyotes, and he is probably the best all-around player in college hockey if it wasn’t for Adam Fantili. Cooley has exceptional vision and a feel for the game and can still score on his own if he wants to.
Rounding out their top line is the second-round pick of the Toronto Maple Leafs, Matthews Knies. Knies is a power forward who can score from others or on his own if he has to. He might even make the Leafs’ roster for their playoff run after the NCAA season.
Minnesota has an embarrassment of riches on their 2nd and 3rd lines and are deeper than almost every team in the tournament this year. Their blue line depth is also scary, with three or four guys that will be playing in the NHL.
Minnesota is also very balanced in scoring, with 10 players scoring over 20 points this season. Their second line also has two or three players that will be playing in the NHL. Speed is also their friend due to their depth.
The ability to play fast and make the game a track meet suits their style of play better and this is because of how many players they can trust to play significant minutes. Overall, no team in this tournament can match the speed and depth the Gophers possess.
Similar to the depth overall as a team, the Gophers have two legit number one power plays. Their true number one is the best in the country in terms of talent, and the stats back that up as well.
The Gophers have a ridiculous 30 percent power play success. Minnesota has five future NHL players, and maybe all-stars at that; you expect nothing different than the best power play in the country.
Overall, the special teams is a strength as their penalty kill is also very good at 16 percent. For the Gophers to win it all, they simply need to play to their potential because when they are on, they have beat teams such as St. Cloud State, Michigan, and others by three goals consistently.