The Minnesota Wild had a new blueliner on the ice for today’s optional skate. Well, that’s what the Lighthouse initially thought, until we realized it wasn’t a new skater at all—just Christian Folin sporting a jet-black moustache.
With the practice being optional, our first inclination, maybe it was a fake ‘stache stuck onto his upper lip for laughs. But upon closer inspection, we confirmed it was the real deal.
We had more questions than a cop in an interrogation room. Did he lose a bet? When did he shave it? How did the fair-haired Swede get it so dark?
“It was my idea,” Folin said. “I was kind of bored yesterday when I found out I wasn’t playing, so I wanted to give the guys a good laugh.
“I think I succeeded.”
Of course, his teammates got a kick out of the muzzy. Fellow blueliner and friend to the facial foliage, Matt Dumba, quipped that in the right light it looks blue.
“They liked it a lot,” Folin said. But there was a contingent with youngsters who found it a bit creepy. “They’re kind of scared, they don’t want me around their kids now.”
Folin picked up a box of Just For Men “dark black” at the pharmacy. He’s familiar with the process, but it’s the first time we’ve seen the lip sweater with the Wild.
“I think it started when I came over here to the U.S. In November you try to get a good ‘stache going and the last few years I’ve been doing Just For Men,” Folin said. “I did it this year, too, but I was in Iowa so you guys didn’t get to glance at it. So I decided to bring it back here in March.”
He’s not sure how long he’ll keep the lip luggage, and it might not be up to him.
“My girlfriend didn’t like it at all,” Folin said.
Dubnyk, Suter and Coyle Take Option
With the Wild playing three games in four days, the club held an optional practice today. Charlie Coyle, Devan Dubnyk and Ryan Suter all exercised the options, but Head Coach Mike Yeo said they’d all be ready tomorrow when Minnesota hosts the New Jersey Devils.
“It was a full optional today,” Yeo said. “We were actually surprised at the number of guys that went on, and that’s a good sign.”
Even with the team’s new acquisitions at the trade deadline, the bench boss believed that rest is more important at this juncture of the year.
“We’ve played an awful lot of games during this stretch,” Yeo said. “I could see, on the ice, a little bit of fatigue in our game yesterday and even just emotionally, you could kind of feel it on the bench.”
Defenseman Marco Scandella wasn’t on the ice with the team after skating yesterday on his own. Yeo did designate the previously undisclosed injury as the upper-body variety and added that he hasn’t been able to shoot pucks at 100 percent. The bench boss said he’d need to join the team for a few practices before he expects him to return to game action, making the weekend games against the Anaheim Ducks and St. Louis Blues unlikely.
“I’m not going to say no,” Yeo said regarding Friday’s game against Anaheim. “I know that he has to feel better than he does right now.”