2:30 p.m. CST
A fun and busy day over at Xcel Energy Center on the day after the Wild’s first five-goal home win in more than 2 ½ seasons.
First things first, the Wild made a roster move today, calling up center/left wing Peter Olvecky (ohl-VEHT-skee) from AHL Houston. The Wild has put center Krys Kolanos on waivers, meaning he has 24 hours to be claimed by another team (by 11 a.m. tomorrow), or he will be assigned to the Houston Aeros. Olvecky will wear No. 28 and earned his first NHL recall. It would appear he would make his way into the lineup as early as Friday in Edmonton, since Craig Weller was not on the ice with the team this morning.
The Wild skated for nearly an hour today, working on all aspects of the game, including 5-on-5 and 2-on-1. The Wild, remember, scored six 5-on-5 goals last night.
It’s a big day for Cal Clutterbuck
. Not only did he break a franchise record with nine hits last night, he is also attending tonight’s Hockey Unplugged at Shamrock’s in St. Paul in place of Derek Boogaard. You really have to be around Clutterbuck to realize what a sparkplug he is and just overall great guy. Today I didn’t even see him, but all of a sudden heard him say “Stanzel, nice sweater” as I was walking through the hallway. I think it’s a nice sweater, blue, green and white argyle, but some others, Brad Bombardir included, don’t like it. So it was nice of Clutterbuck to weigh in. That started quite the conversation in the locker room. Colton Gillies said “nice sweater” and meant it, and then Nick Schultz said the same thing, but with a grin on his face. Equipment manager Tony DaCosta asked him for some clarification, and Schultz said “It’s definitely something I’d wear” so I guess Clutterbuck needs some fashion sense.
Clutterbuck is famous (or infamous, according to DaCosta) for just sitting in his gear after practice. Talking to writers, talking to Boogaard and James Sheppard, just soaking in NHL life. DaCosta usually has to ask him to finish taking his gear off so he can do laundry. Today, Clutterbuck and Sheppard were hanging out, in gear, talking with Brad Bombardir. I said that Wild TV should do a reality series just featuring Clutterbuck, Sheppard and Boogaard and their routine for the hour after practice ends.
Boogaard was still on the ice when I left the rink, with a couple of the World’s Toughest Cowboys that are participating in the World’s Toughest Rodeo this Friday and Saturday at Xcel Energy Center. “Toughest Cowboy” is a new reality series on Spike TV that follows the rodeo for a season. One cowboy was in full goalie gear – he looked hilarious – and another just in skates with Boogaard, firing shots at the other guy. The episode should run March 5 at 10 p.m. (central) on Spike TV.
Speaking of that, a special event going on Thursday at Tom Reid’s Hockey City Pub, where Whiplash the Monkey will be knighted by the Winter Carnival Royalty. If you haven’t seen footage of Whiplash, check it out on the internet. The knighting will happen at 6 p.m. There will be live music between 7-10 p.m., and also the premier of “Toughest Cowboy” from 10-11.
Game notes are pretty much done for Friday in Edmonton. It was pretty easy, we had so many good notes from last night. Aaron Sickman is on the road with the team this weekend. He is trying to make sure everything is set for the plane to leave on time, so the team can get to practice on time in Edmonton. Rexall Place is not available, so they will skate at Millenium Place.
I also interviewed Kurtis Foster
today for a game program story for February. It should turn out a heartwarming story, you’ll have to check it out. And I just realized I’ve been to my last Wild practice until Monday. The team is flying back Saturday night after the game in Vancouver. It should arrive around 4:30 a.m., so no practice Sunday.