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The Ryan Stanzel Blog: Oct. 1, 2008

by Ryan Stanzel / Minnesota Wild
Oct. 1, 2008

Buffalo vs. Minnesota
7 p.m. CDT
* PONDcast preview
Wild Radio's Kevin Falness catches up with, among others, Jacques Lemaire and Barry  Brust

 -- NEWS --
Injury update
Zidlicky -- out, sore ankle
Burns -- cleared
Bouchard -- probable
Bergeron -- broken nose, possible

Forwards: Veilleux, Koivu, Miettinen, Pouliot, Brunette, Sheppard, Boogaard, Weller, Bouchard, Nolan, Belanger, Kolanos

Defensemen: Scott, Mojzis, Schultz, Burns, Cuma, Reitz

Goaltenders: Harding, Backstrom

OCT. 1, 2008: 
Jacques Lemaire
Lemaire addresses the team's Sept. 30 overtime win and the upcoming game vs. Buffalo at Xcel Energy Center
Media Relations and Team Services Coordinator Ryan Stanzel will file a periodic blog throughout the 2008-09 season, if only to prove to his mother that her son does more than “watch sports for a living. He can be reached at

Oct. 1, 2008

3:30 p.m.

Good Wild gameday, State of Hockey fans.

Sitting in the Al Shaver Press Box with a few other media types gearing up for tonight’s game against Buffalo. And hoping we don’t have to hold Aaron Sickman by his Robin Yount jersey when he tries to jump if things don’t improve for the Brew Crew this afternoon.

It has been a busy day, with lots of copies being made this morning, and a good media turnout for a morning skate that saw Jacques Lemaire take his “option” and watch from the bench before doing an interview with Wild TV (see the link to the right!).

I mentioned yesterday how I was so tired that I put on my wrong sportscoat. It’s not much better today with the back-to-back games. Having lunch with my girlfriend at a local pizzeria, I managed to spill an entire glass of water all over, and then trip the waitress with my size 14s as she went to get more napkins. Of course, most who know me can attest I don’t need an excuse to be sloppy.

I’d better knock out the rest of this game program story on the newcomers to the Wild lineup. Before I go, and we’ll do a mailbag soon, I want to give a quick shoutout to B.J. in St. Cloud for reading the blog and sending me an e-mail last night.

6 p.m.

Back from dinner (the Country Fried Steak was delish) and I’m hooked up to the Wild network, which is a good thing, because one of our important duties on gamenights is to hand out wireless access codes. I just gave one to Derek Clancey, a scout with the Penguins. Derek gave me my first touch of hockey heartbreak at a professional level back in 2002. During my rookie season in Louisiana of the ECHL, our team went 56-12-4. We were 28-1-2 at Christmas. It took me a while to realize that every team doesn’t step on the ice expecting to win 8-2 every night. Clancey was coach of the Jackson Bandits, the lowest seed in the playoffs, which knocked our IceGators out of the playoffs in a best-of-five series (and we had four of the five games at home).

I’m about ready for the big trip beginning tomorrow, which is our only preseason trip where we go the day beforehand. We will practice at noon at Xcel, and our flight is at 3 p.m. The Blue Jackets play Buffalo tomorrow night, so several of us plan on attending that game after we land. We’ll have a busy gameday and then a flight to Montreal -- kind of a long way to go for a back-to-back set of preseason games.

Doug Risebrough, Jacques Lemaire and Mario Tremblay don’t often get back to Montreal for games, so I’m sure we will find a crush of media awaiting them. We’ll also have to be busy with player ticket purchases. Belanger and Bouchard alone have spoken for most of our allotment, so Aaron Sickman is currently trying to add a few more to our list. According to the NHL CBA, NHL players must purchase tickets to road games. In baseball, players get comp tickets, so the traveling secretary’s job is a little easier. I’ll spend a lot of time early Saturday afternoon sending credit card numbers and ticket orders to the Canadiens box office.

I am excited for my first trip to Quebec, as an adult at least, and to get a sneak peak at the location of the 2008 NHL Draft.

Montreal is a nice location also, because our hotel is very near Bell Centre, meaning we don’t really worry about bus times to and from practice, and to the game. The guys throw their bags on the bus on their way across the street. Nashville is another place where our hotel is across the street, and it’s one less thing for us to worry about, especially if we are in the midst of a long road trip. The hotels in most of the western Canadian cities are between 10-15 minutes away from the rink. We typically do two bus runs after practice back to the hotel, so it can be hard setting exact bus times.

For anyone who is worried about Aaron Sickman, he made it through the Brewers loss unscathed. He’s hoping for two games in Milwaukee this weekend since he’ll be there. Me, I’m hoping to catch some playoff baseball when we’re in Tampa later this month to take on the Lightning.

I'll be blogging sporadically tonight. It's an exciting night for our department, since we have a suite inside Xcel Energy Center for family, friends and loved ones. So we'll be entertaining a bit as well.

10 p.m.

Hectic night here at Xcel Energy Center. Lots of revelry in the communications/broadcast suite tonight. A fairly busy night in the press box, too. Aaron and I just returned from the locker room -- our post-game was pretty quick tonight. The update on Josh Harding -- eye abrasion.

I’m going home to finish packing (OK, start packing) for the big road trip. Nice to see the Wild with another win tonight. We’ll attempt to bring two more back with us from Columbus and Montreal.

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