Admit it. You scoffed. All the talk of the Jackets and Wild being rivals for playoff position was all good fun, right? Not so fast my friend! Minnesota is tied for first in their division, and Columbus in 5th in the conference this young season. The Wild come off 2 great efforts, beating Western conference power St Louis 3-1 in St Louis, then traveling to undefeated New York and tying the Islanders 3-3. Minnesota hasn't lost in 4, and despite only playing 1 home game thus far, has gone 4-2-2 in the early going. Much of the credit must go to Dan Cloutier who is 6th in the league in GAA. Marco Sturn leads the Wild with 10 points. "Well, we know that Columbus will be in the running for the playoffs," said coach Michel Therrien. "We need to make a statement in their house that if they want to run, we plan on being the chased."