Martin Havlat says nothing has changed.
The winger from the Czech Republic is an all-star and one of the major reasons the Wild are in the thick of playoff contention in the Western Conference. And his numbers pace the team.
Both the numbers and his playing time began to improve after agent Allan Walsh sent an e-mail to news media in late October criticizing the Wild for Havlat's lack of ice time and how much he was used on the power play.
At the time, Havlat had six assists in eight games. Since then he has become the team's go-to guy on offense, scoring a team-high 19 goals and adding 33 assists for 53 points in 62 games and 47 of them in the past 54 games.
More important, he has been scoring the important goals for a team that going into Saturday's games was tied with the Los Angeles Kings for fifth in the West.
In the words of Wild coach Todd Richards, Havlat is a "difference-maker" who scored a key goal to send a Feb. 20 game against Detroit into overtime, then kickstarted the Wild offense with an early goal in a 4-1 win over Edmonton two days later.
"Marty's been scoring some huge goals for us. There was a point in the last game where in the third period he started to take over, and I thought tonight he continued that," Richards said after the win over the Oilers. "It seemed like when he was around the puck or had the puck on his stick, he was going to make a play."
Minnesota Wild finally see the real Martin Havlat
St. Paul Pioneer Press | Feb 27