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Season without the Wild will be sad one

Why is it every time a sports team from Minnesota has the potential to be really good, something has to happen that just screws everything up?

The Vikings get Brett Favre, he gets hurt.

The Twins re-sign Joe Mauer, then lose everyone else.

The Timberwolves draft someone really good, and he decides to stay in Spain.

And now this year, the Wild got the top two free agents in the game -- Team USA captain Zach Parise and top defenseman Ryan Suter -- bringing the excitement of a possible season of finally being contenders. But my dreams were crushed with the news of the National Hockey League lockout.

I don't know what's crazier to me, the idea of possibly bringing home a Stanley Cup (or at least coming close) or the idea of hockey-less winter in Minnesota.

Personally, I'd prefer to watch the Wild lose than not watch the Wild at all.

Watching the Wild play has been a tradition for me winter after winter since I first started playing hockey myself when I was 9 years old.

Nothing topped off a hard hockey practice, or a long night at Lincoln Rink, like a Wild game. And over the winters I've seen a lot of players come and go.

There was Pavol Demitra (who tragically died in a plane crash last summer), Brent Burns and Manny Fernandez. But nothing dug a greater hole in my heart than watching Marion Gaborik get traded to the New York Rangers, and then become their leading scorer.

But even though I've been blessed with my fair share of bad Wild seasons, I'd say this one is definitely gaining the momentum to be the worst.

Like I said, it doesn't matter how bad they've been, they've still always been there to keep me entertained when its too cold to move and too blizzardy to leave the house.

It's crazy how it takes something like losing a hockey season to realize how important the little things in life really are.

It doesn't matter if the Wild are the best team in the league, or worse than the Gophers, they're still my favorite hockey team, and I don't know what winters would be like without them.

Hopefully, the National Hockey League owners and players can settle their differences, and the 2012 hockey season will go on like it's supposed to.

And who knows? Maybe in six months I'll be talking about the Wild's first Stanley Cup. Now that would be awesome.

Jonah Bowe is a senior at Detroit Lakes High School.