After a fun day at practice yesterday, it was all business at the Minnesota Wild’s morning skate before taking on the Anaheim Ducks.
After a day off yesterday, the Minnesota Wild had a “work disguised as fun,” practice in Anaheim, as Head Coach Mike Yeo put it.
The Minnesota Wild embarks on its third West Coast road trip of the season, arriving in San Jose today. The Wild’s four-game roadie will be challenging, kicking things off against the Sharks (33-12-6: 72 pts., fourth in the West) tomorrow.
After flying out from Minnesota this morning, the team headed straight to HP Pavilion for practice—not the Lighthouse’s dream scenario since the local temp is around 66 degrees and we’ve been suffering from a severe vitamin D deficiency thanks to the polar vortex holding the State of Hockey hostage.
Zach Parise was full of smiles as he spoke in the locker room after the Wild’s optional morning skate and it wasn’t because one of the local reports asked him about the Team USA Olympic opening ceremony outfit.
Parise will re-enter the lineup tonight as the Wild hosts the Chicago Blackhawks at Xcel Energy Center. The forward was initially injured when he blocked a shot against the St. Louis Blues on Nov. 25. He missed the next game and battled through 12 games, before going on Injured Reserve on Dec. 23.
Despite missing a number of key players, the Minnesota Wild continues to chug along in the New Year, winning five of six contests in 2014. While there is no timetable on return of four of its key veterans (Mikko Koivu, Zach Parise, Josh Harding and Jared Spurgeon), the team had some good news on the injury front as one skated on his own this morning before practice and another joined the club for today’s morning skate before taking on the Ottawa Senators at Xcel Energy Center tonight.
The Minnesota Wild has loaned defenseman Matt Dumba to Portland of the Western Hockey League. Fresh from representing Canada at the World Junior Championships in Malmo, Sweden, Dumba returns to the WHL after his rights were traded from Red Deer to Portland. At the WJC, the blueliner had an assist and was plus-4 in seven games.
The 19-year-old skated in 13 games in Minnesota this season, tallying a goal and an assist. He was the team's first round pick (seventh overall) in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft.
The 21-year-old has skate in four games with Minnesota this season. In 24 games with Iowa, Bulmer has nine goals and five assists. He also has racked up 24 penally minutes.
Spurgeon has 12 points (1-11=12) in 43 games this season. He suffered a lower-body injury after blocking a shot on Jan. 2 against the Buffalo Sabres. There is no timetable, but is expected to be out for a few weeks.
Returning to Xcel Energy Center after a three-game road trip, the Minnesota Wild welcomes back an old Northwest foe tonight.
The Frozen Four will return to the State of Hockey in 2018. It was announced today that Saint Paul will be the site of the 2018 NCAA Men's Hockey Frozen Four. This will be Xcel Energy Center's third time hosting the tournament (2002, 2011).