The Wild leaves the familiarity of the Western Conference for the first time tonight, beginning a back-to-back in New York against the Rangers.
Minnesota had Sunday off, save for the team flight, so today’s morning skate was focused on execution and staying sharp. With all the talk about the Wild practicing more than playing, the team will wind up going five days (Saturday-Wednesday) with nothing more than a morning skate.
Mobilizing the D
The Wild defensemen have gotten a lot of accolades for moving the puck, and picking up points. Mike Yeo said the reason is two-pronged.
“It’s a couple years of preaching, it’s more of a habit now,” Yeo said, adding he expects things to “tighten up” as the year goes on.
However, the defenseman aren’t alone in getting the credit.
“Give our forwards credit,” Yeo said. “If you’re not making the right plays on entries into the zone, that doesn’t develop.”
Yeo “not worried” about power play
Mike Yeo told a large group of New York reporters that he’s not worried about the power play.
“I’m not worried about it, as long as we handle it the right way,” Yeo said. “We’ve done a good job of pushing it behind us, and not letting it affect the next shift.”
Post-game tonight, the Wild will bus to Newark (crossing fingers for no traffic in Lincoln Tunnel) and fly to Logan Airport in Boston, for tomorrow night’s game against the Bruins. That contest is televised nationally on NBC Sports Network.
Folin, Ballard still out
Christian Folin and Keith Ballard stayed back in the Twin Cities due to illness, but were expected to skate and work out today, Yeo said.