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At Home, Wild Look To Build Off Gained Momentum

by Evan Sporer / Minnesota Wild

As the Minnesota Wild prepare for its next game on Wednesday against the Vancouver Canucks, it's all about progression.

Head Coach Mike Yeo has talked all season about how the Wild's main focus is using each game to build toward a more complete product. With a win at home on Saturday to start a four-game homestand, the Wild is hoping to carry some of that momentum and the things it did well into its next challenge against Vancouver.

"We take pride in our home building, and we take pride in every game, but especially here at home, you have to take care of business when you're at home," Schroeder said. "We're just going to go one game at a time, and go from there."

Schroeder scored his first goal of the season two games ago against the Boston Bruins. Defenseman Jonas Brodin scored his first of the season on Saturday against the Nashville Predators. Getting the first goal does a different type of building, one in the confidence department.

"There's no question it does," Yeo said. "It's a monkey off the back, it's something you stop pressing for, but something that we preach all the time is don't go out there and concentrate on the goal.

"Don't go out there and concentrate on the win, concentrate on the things that will bring you that result. Sometimes it's a little easier said than done."

Schroeder has been playing on a line with Charlie Coyle and Ryan Carter for the past five-plus games. The trio, Schroeder said, has been building chemistry and finding ways it can be most effective.

"We all bring a different dynamic to the line, and that's what is so unique about the line," Schroeder said. "For us to be effective we always have to be moving, and constantly talking out there. Shutting down the other line we're going against, and making sure we have some offensive zone time."

Carter, who exited practice early Monday after taking a puck to the face, was back on the ice Tuesday, with his Movember facial hair still intact.

"Power of the mustache must have blocked it," Carter joked.

Carter said he was fine after a long day in the dentist's office, and should be good for the game on Wednesday.

"I had the one tooth that was still real, and on the x-rays it was broken so they yanked it," Carter said. "Other than that it's just normal, some stitches, some teeth."


The Wild assigned forward Brett Bulmer to Iowa on Tuesday, and recalled forward Kurtis Gabriel. Bulmer had played in the past three games for Minnesota, and Gabriel, who has previously been recalled twice, made his NHL debut Nov. 10.

"This is what we've done," Yeo said. "All these guys, they've done a good job, they've come up, they've done their job, and it's good to keep switching them out. Give them all a chance to spend some time in Iowa, and develop and get the ice time that they need, but obviously based on our opponent or based on what we think we need for a certain night, then we can make those switches."

Yeo said against a physical Canucks team, Gabriel was the logical choice. His debut came against the Winnipeg Jets, prior to which Gabriel said it was no secret how he fit into that matchup.

"[Gabriel has] got a good sense of the type of game he needs to play when he's here," Yeo said. "He's going to get in on the forecheck, he's going to finish checks, and he's smart enough to understand the game, and play the game within the game."

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