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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(updated) Clutterbuck, Scott questionable tonight; Harding in goal; Lots of gametime decisions

Posted by: Michael Russo under Wild pregame skate Updated: January 14, 2010 - 3:54 PM

(updated)

This is such a bigger issue than just one Pittsburgh FSN producer withholding a replay from the league showing a good Flyers goal. I plan to write about this NHL video review process in the next couple weeks. In the meantime, here's the release sent to all Rightsholders today:

To All Rightsholders:

The NHL's Video Review process was established to assist in determining the validity of all potential goals. In establishing this process, the Member Clubs have given their support and resources to the League's Hockey Operations Department to ensure that all goals are properly reviewed.

One of the primary resources in the review process is the game telecast. In support of the mandate from the Clubs for video review, it is required that replays from all camera angles be shown in a timely sequence so as to provide the Hockey Operations Department with the best opportunity to review the situation and make a ruling. In the case of video review, producers and their crews have an obligation to the game, the teams and our fans to provide any and all replays of the play in question. Obviously, under no circumstances should a replay be withheld as to be selective with any sense of prejudice toward one outcome or another.

As television rightsholders to the NHL and its Member Clubs, your understanding of this responsibility is imperative. We appreciate your continued partnership.

****************************************************
 

Good afternoon from Missouri.

The Wild had an optional morning skate today at the building formerly known as Kiel Center and Savvis Center. Those were the days

Josh Harding gets the start.

Cal Clutterbuck exercised his option today, and it might be worse than that. He just doesn't look like his normal self, and coach Todd Richards said he's not "feeling well." Richards voiced concern that it;s due to the elbow the head Sergei Gonchar levied the other night. Incidentally, Colie Campbell called it a shoulder on NHL Live today because a shoulder to the head in the NHL is a good hockey hit.

Remember, yesterday morning, Clutterbuck said he felt "different," left the ice to consult with medical trainer Don Fuller to make sure he could skate. Clutterbuck says he was given the green light because he would have felt symptoms after the hit. So he went back on the ice, and then played last night.

"We talked with him before the game. We asked him questions to make sure. We asked him two , three times. He said he was fine, he was good to go," Richards said.

But now it looks like he's not, although the Wild's still calling Clutterbuck a gametime decision.

I have a call into Clutterbuck, but if he's really planning to possibly play, it's afternoon nap time. I have a call into GM Chuck Fletcher, who's not with the team.

John Scott is also a gametime decision. Richards says he's not feeling well and may be coming down with something, although he was fun to shoot the breeze with today and didn't see sick. He does have a sore hand because there's only so many times you can take your hand and smash it against skull without it hurting. But Richards says the hand isn't why he's a gametime decision.

If Scott can't play, the Wild will go with five defensemen because injured Clayton Stoner isn't on the trip. James Sheppard and Petr Sykora are extra forwards. Robbie Earl skated really late, so he may be out regardless.

Chatted for awhile with Blaine's David Backes (cue the Spring Lake Park folks) and Bloomington's Erik Johnson about the U.S. Olympic team. Planned to initially lead my notebook with it, but now I may have to hold it all for the Olympics or a later column because there were so many Wild notes this morning.

Backes had a good line. I told him how I always get angry emails from locals if I refer to him as Blaine's David Backes because he went to Spring Lake Park High: "Yeah, should it be the school system or the city before a name? They can fix it if they make it the same."

The boys were loose today. Everybody (OK the media) was ribbing on little Andrew Ebbett for getting the king-sized locker, which is how four of him wide. Yet, captain Mikko Koivu's cramped next to a garbage can.

Keith Tkachuk found his good friend, Wild equipment manager Tony DaCosta, and said, "Where's is that workaholic? Burn any equipment lately?"

Tkachuk received some dentistry courtesy of a puck the other night. He's missing three front teeth and has a root canal in his near future. Andy McDonald back in tonight. Backes, who fights Canadian Olympians all the time now (Toews, Perry, Nash and kinda Heatley), will have Paul Kariya on his line. Good news is Backes won't have to fight any Canadian Wild Olympians tonight.  Cam Janssen looked out.

He said he didn't know his role under Andy Murray. I loved that line. My mother knows Janssen's role, but he didn't. He's since apologized to Murray for those comments.

Brent Burns continues to work out, skate and awaits medical clearance, Fletcher said in an email to me this morning.

Vancouver's just hitting the ice for practice now, so I'll hopefully have Alain Vigneault reax to Boogaard's claim today. I also hope top get full Colie Campbell quotes from NHL Live since so far he hasn't granted me an interview.

That's it for now.

 

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