Three Things To Note For Wild/Avalanche Series

MinnesotaDespite already knowing that these two teams competing both live in a hockey town, the first-round of the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs remains notable between the Minnesota Wild and the Colorado Avalanche.

1) The Avalanche jumped from 29th in the NHL standings (39 pts., .406 points %) in 2012-13 to third overall (112 pts., .683) in 2013-14, becoming the first club since the league expanded to 21 teams in 1979 to go from the bottom three to top three in a single season. (This season’s Cinderella team)

2) This season, Minnesota center Mikko Koivu became the franchise career leader in points (451), and over his nine-year NHL career, the Wild captain has 19 goals and 43 points vs. Colorado (regular season and postseason), both personal highs vs. any team.

3) Avalanche defenseman Erik Johnson, the first overall pick in the 2006 NHL Draft, will be making his NHL postseason debut tonight.

It’s not about what you do in December or January, it’s all about the spring months in the NHL.

For more on this story visit: Jason Brough, NBC Sports