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Wild owner says visiting Ryan Suter was “really key” in signings

FILE   2012 Tim Hortons NHL All-Star Game

FILE - JULY 2, 2012: It has been reported July 4, 2012 that NHL free agent Ryan Suter has been signed by the Minnesota Wild. OTTAWA, ON - JANUARY 29: Ryan Suter #20 of the Nashville Predators and Team Chara looks on against Team Alfredsson during the 2012 Tim Hortons NHL All-Star Game at Scotiabank Place on January 29, 2012 in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

Bruce Bennett

Much was made of both the Detroit Red Wings and Minnesota Wild traveling to woo Ryan Suter. Apparently that made a big difference, at least if you ask Wild owner Craig Leipold.

Leipold described his trip to meet Suter in Wisconsin “really key” in landing Suter and Zach Parise, as he told ESPN’s Judd Zulgad.

“We got there and the reports are pretty accurate,” Leipold said. “The Red Wings plane was there and they were before us so we were very, very nervous about that. But it was good to see him, for him to see us, for us to talk to Ryan about what we wanted to do, what we were building.

“He kind of knew everything anyway because he had paid a lot of attention to it. He was even, we were talking to him, and he’s text messaging Zach and it was really at that point that (we knew) we’re going to drive this deal and we’re going to make this thing happen. Within two hours it really kind of came together.”

Follow the link for more interesting, inside talk from Leipold about what the negotiations were like.