Michael Russo has covered the National Hockey League since 1995. He has covered the Minnesota Wild for the Star Tribune since 2005, after 10 years of covering the Florida Panthers for the Sun-Sentinel. He uses “Russo’s Rants” to feed a wide-ranging hockey-centric discussion with readers, and can be heard weekly on KFAN (100.3 FM) radio and seen weekly on Fox Sports North.

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Erik Haula recalled, Jason Zucker reassigned

Posted by: Michael Russo under Wild player moves, Wild practice Updated: December 13, 2013 - 1:17 PM

Quick blog as I just checked into my Denver hotel and need to hustle to the arena, but the Iowa shuttle is being called upon again.

Like a yo-yo, Jason Zucker has been reassigned and Erik Haula is back. The Wild is gathering in less than an hour at the Pepsi Center before an optional practice at DU, but my guess now is Charlie Coyle finally moves back to first-line right wing and Haula centers the second line with Nino Niederreiter and Jason Pominville.

Of course, I suppose Pominville could stay at top-line RW and Coyle moves to second-line RW considering just yesterday coach Mike Yeo said he's tired of breaking up the first line every time there's problems on other lines.

But Niederreiter-Haula-Pominville was good a few weeks ago and I don't know how much more evidence there needs to be that Zach Parise-Mikko Koivu-Pominville may "do a lot of good things," but they certainly don't do a lot of filling the net. When Parise and Koivu were great last year, Coyle was on that line. When Pominville's been great this year, it's been with him on the second line (granted, Mikael Granlund as his center).

Coyle just doesn't seem to have it right now at second-line center. He hasn't been strong on pucks at all lately and isn't scoring, so why not make the change?

We'll see if that's the plan soon.

More later


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