The Minnesota Wild's training camp resembled a boot camp on Monday, the day before the team is set to take the ice against Detroit in the first preseason game. Wild head coach Jacques Lemaire shuffled his three camp teams around, and two of those teams took the ice for the first session at 10:30. That group practiced for 50 minutes, then scrimmaged for 30 minutes, and then skated another 15 minutes.
"They'll sleep well tonight," said Lemaire.
Click here to listen to the Wild PONDcast from today's practice
A second group, made up mostly of lesser-known players, took the ice afterwards. While it seems clear that this group, which includes Tyler Hirsch, Colton Gillies, Joel Ward and Roman Voloshenko, is Houston-bound, Lemaire said there's a chance some could be invited to practice again with the big boys.
As for tomorrow night, Lemaire has his lineup set, and the home crowd will get a chance to see some intriguing names. Pavol Demitra will be centering Marian Gaborik and Branko Radivojevic on the first line. Eric Belanger will center Benoit Pouliot and Pierre-Marc Bouchard
for a French Connection line. Dominic Moore will center Petr Kalus and Danny Irmen. And, Wes Walz will center Derek Boogaard and Matt Foy.Kurtis Foster
will pair with Kim Johnsson. Petteri Nummelin is with Brent Burns. And, Martin Skoula will skate with Erik Reitz. Niklas Backstrom
and Josh Harding
will be the goaltenders.
Today's scrimmage was dominated by Team Green (too many names were shuffled around so nobody knows which team was which). Radivojevic, Kalus and Nick Schultz scored goals for Green, while Burns tallied the only goal for Team White. Harding looked sharp in the win, especially on a windmill glove save on a point-blank blast off the stick of Rolston.
Here is a complete list of players practicing in today's second session:
Frederic St. DenisClayton Stoner
Tyler HirschMatt Kassian