When Cullen is on the ice, Devin Setoguchi and Jason Zucker play better.
It’s a simple as that.
Setoguchi, 26, is entering his prime and is Minnesota’s second-leading goal-scorer this season. He’s also frustratingly mercurial and only scores consistently when paired with Cullen, a veteran that is 10 years his elder.
Part of this is the latter’s playmaking ability, but part of it is his influence in the locker room. And it’s not only Setoguchi who is benefiting from Cullen’s mentorship.
“It’s great having him mentor me,” rookie Jason Zucker, 21, told the Star Tribune’s Michael Russo. “He’s been around the block. He knows the game and all the details of it.”
Zucker recently has been sent down, but should the puck hound get called back up, Wild coach Mike Yeo needs to put him on Cullen’s line.