Happy Birthday to Eric Nystrom, and a Happy Valentine’s Day from downtown St. Paul, which in my opinion, far outranks Paris in the Springtime as the most romantic place on earth. The red hot Minnesota Wild players are feeling the love, and the confidence of a team on a roll.
After a day off, the club got back on the ice to prepare for tomorrow’s game against the West’s number one team, the Vancouver Canucks. The big news today was Marek Zidlicky wearing the same color jersey as all of the other defensemen. That means he’s been cleared for contact and is taking another step toward a return. It’s doubtful that the return comes tomorrow or Wednesday, but it sure seems as though he’s getting close.
Niklas Backstrom will get the start in goal tomorrow, but it’s unknown if he or Jose Theodore will face the Blackhawks in Chicago on Wednesday.
Head Coach Todd Richards was asked if he thought his team was walking with some swagger right now, and he admitted they were. “I think the guys have earned it, and you have to have some confidence when you play. One of the big differences from the start of the year to now is confidence.”
Richards also talked about the play of his defense and goaltending, but attributed a lot of that success to the way the offense is playing. “We spend more time in the offensive zone, and you don’t have to spend as much time in your own zone. A lot of times, you’re wearing the other team down.”