Monday, October 1, 2007

Your 2007-2008 Minnesota Wild

With the signing of Sheppard, the Wild's opening roster appears to be set.

The forwards include:

Gaborik, Demitra, Walz, Koivu, Moore, Radivojevic, Sheppard, Veilleux, Rolston, Belanger, Boogaard, Foy, Parrish and Bouchard.

The defense includes:

Burns, Carney, Foster, Johnsson, Nummelin, Reitz, Schultz and Skoula. (Hill becomes available mid-November).

The goalies are:

Backstrom and Harding.

There are a couple nagging injuries right now (Walz, Foster, Nummelin) which is why Reitz is still here, though he apparently didn't simply back door the job. Pouliot, Kalus and Belle appear to be the first in line for call-ups from Houston.



The Proprietor said...

Another year for Pouliot is what he needs. Did any of the final cuts surprise you?

Aeros played back-to-back preseason tilts vs. the Evil San Antonio Rampage this weekend, first in the sprawling metropolis of Laredo, TX, and then in Beaumont, home of their ECHL-affiliate, Texas Wildcatters (which I guess woud be considered the Wild's single-A squad). They scored four PP goals Saturday night, with Nolan Schaefer getting the win. Looks like he will be No. 1, with Barry Brust as the backup. Brust shutout the Rampage on Friday night, by the way.

I'm sure Pouliot and company got into town today, and will join the other Wild send-downs in a final intrasquad scrimmage tomorrow night before opening with Chicago at home this Sat. Won't be able to make the scrimmage tomorrow, though.

Hey, on the topic of playing in out-of-the-way burgs (burghs? bergs?) such as Laredo, or Beaumont, or London, UK, I think taking NHL preseason games on the road to places like that would go an extra mile toward growing the game's fanbase. Imagine the interest in a preseason game between Crosby's Pens and the Stars in some mid-sized city in the middle of Iowa. Even if it was just the NHL club playing one game a year in the home arena of its AHL affiliate, even that would be very cool. It would be awesome to have the Wild come here once a year. Not only would it be a huge sell, it would also strengthen the bond between the affilliate and its parent club, which the league is obviously trying to do by making the AHL clubs dress almost exactly like their parent clubs.

I think that kind of annual visit to the lower levels and out-of-the-way rinks would be a huge success.

Which is why the idiots at NHL HQ would never even think about it.

Nick in New York said...

You make a great point. Before we go off to Europe and Asia, maybe we ought to shore up support/interest on our own continent first.

I agree 100%.

mike said...

Is Harding going to play half the games this year, or is LeMaire moving away from the tandem system?

kw said...

I'm interested in seeing this Sheppard kid. He sure got a nice payday...

Nick in New York said...

ninja: I read today that JL's contemplating about a 50:30 split between Nik and Hards.

Me too, KW. Now that Center Ice re-upped with the major cable providers I can finally go order it!

mike said...

thanks nick. i panicked and picked up Staal upon hearing he's on Crosby's line and dropped Harding. I may have to someone craftily pick him up again.

Great blog, btw....I haven't visited much before, but I'll be back.

The Proprietor said...

Reitz just got sent to Houston, as well. Who will get his spot in Minn?

Nick in New York said...

ninja: if you can keep Staal, and add Harding back into the mix, I say that's a win! Thanks for reading!

daron: Presumably one or both of Nummelin or Foster has recovered sufficiently to render Reitz Houston-bound.

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Anthony Bremond