Zuccarello displeased with start to Wild tenure: 'I've been terrible'
John Russell / National Hockey League / Getty

Just two games into his tenure with the Minnesota Wild, Mats Zuccarello has already made it abundantly clear he's his own harshest critic.

"I haven't played good at all," Zuccarello said, according to Dane Mizutani of the Pioneer Press. "It's just making plays. I feel like I don't see anyone out there. I don't know. I've got to be better. I've been terrible."

Zuccarello, who typically has outstanding vision, was one of the league's most underrated wingers over the past six seasons with the New York Rangers. Although he suffered an injury in his first regular-season game with the Dallas Stars after they acquired him at last season's trade deadline, he performed well in the playoffs, tallying 11 points in 13 games.

But after signing a lucrative five-year, $30-million contract with the Wild as a free agent this summer, the 32-year-old is having a hard time gelling with his new squad.

"If you're coming to a new team, you want to show them why they signed you, and you want to do everything in that first game," Zuccarello said. "It's simple plays that I normally do that right now are difficult for me. Just think positive and have confidence and make the play when it's there."

With Zuccarello on the ice at five-on-five, the Wild have been outshot 17-7, outscored 4-0, and have generated just one high-danger scoring chance while allowing seven, according to Natural Stat Trick. He's been held without a point through two games.

Zuccarello has been playing right wing on the club's top line with center Eric Staal and a rotating cast of left-wingers. After Zach Parise and Ryan Donato both got opportunities in that role, it now appears Marcus Foligno will get a shot as the Wild attempt to find the right mix. Zuccarello believes he's the common denominator.

"It's more me," he said. "It's about finding my spot and getting comfortable with myself on the ice. I think my teammates do a really good job talking to me and giving me confidence."

Minnesota is winless through its first two contests. Luckily for Zuccarello and his new team, there's plenty of time to turn the season around.

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Zuccarello displeased with start to Wild tenure: 'I've been terrible'
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