Tag Archives: Greg Zanon

Scandella And Zanon Return To Practice; Wild About Children

The Wild has a lot to be thankful for this holiday season. With solid goaltending, stingy defense and timely goal scoring, the Wild sits atop the NHL standings. And with Thanksgiving this week, the team looks like it could be adding a couple more plates at the dinner table.

The Wild got an extra helping of defense at practice as Marco Scandella (concussion) and Greg Zanon (groin) both skated with the team today. Head Coach Mike Yeo expects Mike Lundin (back) to rejoin the club tomorrow and begin practicing, after a two-game rehab stint with the Houston Aeros.

Zanon, who has been out since Oct. 20, didn’t stay on the ice for the entire practice, but Yeo said that as long as there are no setbacks he would continue to skate with the team until fully healthy. Zanon has been out since Oct. 20.

Scandella has missed four games and his status is still undetermined, but with the team sending Kris Fredheim back to Houston on Saturday, his return could be right around the corner. He participated in all of the team’s drills at a full speed, which included some light contact. However, the team can wait until Wednesday before making a decision about his status on the injured reserve.

As for tinkering with the Wild’s league-leading defense, Yeo said: “Let’s get them back, let’s get them in shape, let’s get them feeling the puck and looking like they’re 100 percent and ready to come back into the lineup and then we’ll make those decisions.”

In the spirit of the season, the Wild will host “Wild About Children,” presented by West Bend, tonight at the Landmark Center in Saint Paul. The entire Wild roster will drop their gloves and pick up the serving trays,  and wait on nearly 275 dinner guests. The night benefits Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota with several fundraising efforts, including live and silent auctions.

Wild Lineup Against Canucks: TBD

Post by Mike Doyle

For the first time this season – with the exception of Mike Lundin, who hasn’t skated because of a nagging back injury – the injury bug may bite the Wild against the Vancouver Canucks today.

Because of the early start time (3 p.m. in the State of Hockey) in Vancouver, the status of Mikko Koivu, Greg Zanon and Guillaume Latendresse will be unknown nearly until puck drop. The team didn’t participate in a morning skate and all three are game-time decisions.

Koivu received 10 stitches to the face after being clipped by linemate Dany Heatley’s skate against the Oilers Thursday night. Koivu didn’t skate yesterday, but signs point toward him playing tonight. One of the setbacks: the chin-piece of a full facemask would rest on the sewn-up area. If he skates without a mask, the wound will have no protection. If he skates with it, a solid knock to the mask would likely reopen the wound.

Zanon missed the third period against the Oilers due to a tweaked groin. The shot-blocking machine has only missed one game during the past three seasons. If he is a no-go, Justin Falk will see his first action of the year.

Latendresse was held out of practice with a lower-body injury. The team leader in points missed 58 games (10/28-3/6) last season following surgeries to his left hip. Hopefully, the big winger was held out for precautionary measures. If he is rested, Nick Johnson will likely be inserted into the lineup with some line shuffling to follow.

Quick Skate And Off To Canada

The Wild were on the ice today for a short, yet, strategic practice before heading North of the Border to face the Edmonton Oilers tomorrow night.

Working mostly on systems, breakouts and the transition game, the Wild seemed to be dialed-in and focused after last night’s 4-2 loss to Pittsburgh.

Head Coach Mike Yeo said that he wanted the team to be intense and on-point today, and the team responded with an up-tempo, concise practice. He describe the effort as practicing with “snarl.” Although Yeo was disappointed with his team’s performance last night, especially in the first period, today was not the time nor the place for conditioning drills with a quick two-game road swing, capping with a Saturday afternoon game in Vancouver, on the docket.

Mikko Koivu, Dany Heatley and Devin Setoguchi were reunited on the top line after spending some time apart against the Pens. Yeo said that sometimes a team needs to mix up the lines in an attempt to create a spark. Of note, the wings were playing their strong sides (LW for the left-handed Heatley and RW for Setoguchi), possibly, to help with D-Zone and transition play. Yeo didn’t show his hand in regards to how long any line combination will last or how quickly it will be split.

Defenseman Greg Zanon sat out practice, but not because of the second period blocked shot to the midsection against the Penguins, but to rest a tweaked groin.  He is expected to be ready tomorrow night.

Finally, if you think the team would be down in the dumps, they didn’t show it, at least not the young’un, Brett Bulmer.  At the end of practice, Bulmer and Yeo dropped their gloves and engaged in a mock-fisticuffs standoff and good-natured phantom punching.

After practice, while talking to the media, Yeo joked that Bulmer made some mistakes in the D-Zone and had to be taught a lesson.

Lesson number one Rookie: Don’t mess with the coach; he determines your ice time.

Zanon Misses Practice, Will Play in St. Louis

Hi, Wild fans! Just a quick post today to make sure you’ve got the latest on all things Wild since I’ve got some things to do for Hockey Day Minnesota on Saturday. The guys on the Wild are just as busy, having a late practice this morning before hopping a plane to St. Louis in the next hour. The Wild will play in St. Louis tomorrow and then finish off the home-and-home when it hosts the Blues Saturday as the Hockey Day finale at 8 p.m.

Wild defenseman Greg Zanon was the lone Wild player missing from today’s practice, but since he’s Greg Zanon, I wasn’t that worried. Neither was Todd Richards who said after practice that Zanon is “just sore” from taking a puck to the elbow in yesterday’s game and should play tomorrow. Richards had some great lines about the toughness of NHL players today and their willingness to put their body in front of 100 MPH shots without blinking, and some especially funny quips about everyone’s favorite shot blocker. Hear his comments to the media in today’s PONDcast.

Richards must’ve been happy with last night’s win because he had some fun with the media, acting like he’d keep the goalie decisions for this weekend’s games a secret, before smiling and giving them away: Jose Theodore will play in St. Louis tomorrow and Niklas Backstrom will get the Hockey Day start Saturday.

Other than the lineup announcements, there wasn’t much news from practice. The West just continues to be unbelievably tight and the Wild continues to be forced to win to stay in the thick of things.

The Wild and Blues will face each other for the first time this season and Richards talked about how this weekend is a battle between the two organizations, with two Wild-Blues games and two Aeros-Rivermen games. Of course, the second AHL game will be at Xcel Energy Center Sunday at 1 p.m. Click here to get all the details, including specifics on Wild and Aeros autograph sessions.

Finally, kudos to the Wild video and game operations staff for an excellent job on the pre-game ceremony honoring Andrew Brunette last night. If you didn’t get a chance to watch the festivities, check it out here.

Wild Players Take NHL.com Accolades

Remember, you still have through the week to vote on the Minnesota Wild’s top play of the week, but the NHL has already weighed in with theirs. Niklas Backstrom’s two biggest saves from last week made the Top 10 Saves of the Week on NHL.com, including his glove save on Jonathan Toews, which took the top honors.

Not to be outdone, Greg Zanon showed up with the third best check in the NHL.com Hits of the Week.

Wild Locker Room Filling Up

We’re still over two weeks away from the start of training camp, but the Wild locker room at Xcel Energy Center is starting to get crowded these days. Maybe it just feels that way because Greg Zanon is here and you need to give him extra room for the beard he’s sporting these days.

The Wild’s master of facial hair has really outdone himself this time. We’re talking Alaskan Whaler length today. Had I been thinking, I would have snapped a photo of our favorite shot blocker to give you the full effect. For now, this photo that I found on Google images should paint a pretty clear picture.

As for some other (fresher) faces seen around the locker room, Cal Clutterbuck, Nick Schultz, Josh Harding, Kyle Brodziak, Clayton Stoner, Head Coach Todd Richards and Assistant Coach Dave Barr were all milling about. I know Brent Burns, Andrew Brunette and Cam Barker have all been around as well, but I didn’t see them today.

Harding, who was getting treatment on his hip from massage therapist Travis Green, was excited to receive a DVD copy of him mashing softballs over the Target Field fence. If you still haven’t seen it, here it is.

Most of the guys in town have been skating at various rinks around the Twin Cities. They come to Xcel Energy Center to get their workouts in, and also try on some new equipment. Zanon tried on a set of shoulder pads that made him look rectangular like a Canadian Mountie.

More players are expected to arrive next week, and pretty much the full roster will be here next week. That’s all I got for now. If you’re at the State Fair today, keep an eye out for General Manager Chuck Fletcher. He’ll be doing various radio appearances throughout the afternoon.