By Brendan Klein
One of the most notable aspects of the Xcel Energy Center is its atmosphere. I recall going to Wild games when I was just a wee lad, caught up in the excitement and energy of the 18,000 fans around me. Yet there is one part of the Wild that I fell in love with and have sorely missed this past year. Their goal song.
Now I have nothing against Prince. He is an icon to music that many Minnesotans can be proud of, but I do not listen to his music. Chances are, you do not either. That is not a slam on him, it is just that he is from a different generation. We can not relate to him the way our parents can.
Likewise, we cannot relate to the North Stars the way our parents can.
But the Wild, they are a team that we grew up with. We grew up together. Through playoff upsets and heartbreaking losses, they have been there for us and we have been there for them. And no matter where you are, when you hear “Crowd Chant” by Joe Satriani you immediately think of Minnesota Wild hockey games and our rich hockey history. It is who we are.
Which is why I am saddened to hear that we will be keeping Prince’s song for this season. It lacks the crowd participation and the intimidation factor of thousands of voices yelling together. It simply feels out of place and takes the fun out of scoring a goal.
It was a knee-jerk reaction that was dominated by season ticket holders, many of whom grew up in the golden years of Prince. I think that if the poll was placed with our generation, we would not have decided to switch. Not out of disrespect to Prince, but because this is our Wild hockey team. They are all we have known and hold a special place with us that they will simply not have with our parents and grandparents. And that includes their goal song.
Sometimes innovation is good, like the Vikings “SKOL” clap.
But tradition has its place too, which is why the Wild should restore the rightful goal celebration to the soundtrack. We need to keep the fan experience authentic and energizing. “Let’s Go Crazy” does not do this.
It can be hard to find the right mix of energizing pump-up songs, but when done right it puts the bow on top of any game. Imagine a Wisconsin Badger game without “Jump Around”—it would feel odd. This is how a Wild game feels without our classic goal song.
These reasons are more than enough to explain the importance and necessity for our goal song to be restored. Hopefully the executives with the Wild will understand how our generation feels and why they need to correct this mistake for the sake of the State of Hockey.
Because needless to say, we’re just not that “crazy” about it.