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Wild removes interim tag from Dean Evason's title ahead of qualifying round

Sharks Wild Hockey
Minnesota Wild’s interim head coach Dean Evason looks up at the clock in the third period of an NHL hockey game against the San Jose Sharks, Saturday, Feb. 15, 2020, in St. Paul, Minn. Evason replace Bruce Boudreau who was fired.San Jose won 2-0.(AP Photo/Tom Olmscheid)

The Minnesota Wild did not have to look far to find the replacement for Bruce Boudreau. Dean Evason, who took over as interim coach after Boudreau was fired on Feb. 14, was named the Wild’s full-time coach on Monday morning.

This comes four-plus months after the NHL season was put on hold because of the coronavirus pandemic and as the well gets set to hit the ice on Monday to begin training camp for the NHL’s return to play in August. The Wild also has announced Evason signed a two-year extension with the team through the 2021-22 season.

“I am very excited to announce that Dean Evason is our full-time head coach,” general manager  Bill Guerin said in a statement. “Dean has done a fantastic job as our interim head coach and deserves this opportunity. I look forward to watching our team under his leadership going forward.”

Evason went 8-4-0 after taking over behind the Wild bench. Evason was hired by former Wild general manager Paul Fenton as an assistrant coach before the 2018-19 season. Evason had been coach of the Milwaukee Admirals, the AHL affiliate for Nashville, and the team Fenton had helped run before joining the Wild. Fenton coached Milwaukee for six seasons, going 242-161-53 (.588).

The Wild will face the Vancouver Canucks in the NHL’s qualifying round beginning on Aug. 2. Minnesota will be playing in Edmonton in the NHL’s return to play and teams advancing from the qualifying round will make the 16-game playoff tournament that will take place in two bubbles. The Western Conference will play in Edmonton and the Eastern Conference will play in Toronto.