Acquired early in season, defenseman Ian Cole fits right in with Wild

MINNEAPOLIS, MN – Ian Cole has a system for packing.

He takes three or four hockey bags, fills them with clothes and then loads the bags into his car that’ll be shipped to his next destination.

“The car shows up all packed to the gills,” he said.

And when it’s time to meet his new teammates, the veteran NHL defenseman also knows what to do.

“Hey,” he says. “I’m Ian.”

A two-time Stanley Cup champion with almost 600 games of experience, Cole was traded for the fourth time in his career when the Wild acquired him from Colorado earlier this season. He ended up being the final addition to the 2021 roster, with the team letting last week’s trade deadline pass without making any changes.

But despite being the last to arrive, Cole is no longer an outsider. He has fused to the Wild with his enthusiasm and rugged style of play.