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Harding Sent Back To Aeros

by Staff Writer / Minnesota Wild

 Josh Harding posted a 2-1-1 record with a 2.59 goals against average and a .904 save percentage with the Wild.
Goaltender Josh Harding will return to the Houston Aeros of the American Hockey League today after appearing in three games with the Minnesota Wild. Miroslav Kopriva was recalled from Houston to back up Manny Fernandez in the Wild’s season finale at Dallas on Saturday. Harding was originally called up on March 9 to replace Dwayne Roloson, who was traded to the Edmonton Oilers.

While primarily serving as a back up to Manny Fernandez, the Wild’s second round pick in the 2002 NHL Entry Draft got three starts, and turned in a record of 2-1-0. Harding made NHL history on April 4, becoming the first netminder to make his NHL debut in a shootout, a game in which the Wild defeated St. Louis, 5-4.

He followed that start with a 2-0 shutout of the Chicago Blackhawks on April 11. Harding lost his first game on Thursday at Nashville, dropping a 4-2 decision. Harding finished his first NHL season with a 2.59 goals against average and a .904 save percentage.

Harding will return to the Aeros for three regular season contests before the Calder Cup playoffs begin. Already having clinched a playoff spot, the Aeros need to win all three games to have a chance win the West division. Harding has played in 36 games with the Aeros this season and owns a 27-8-0 record witha .923 save percentage.

Kopriva is 6-4-1 with a 3.52 goals against average with the Aeros this season.

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