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Havlat reflects on Olympic experience

  • Blog Post by: Michael Russo
  • February 28, 2010 - 1:41 PM

By Chip Scoggins

Hello everyone. Martin Havlat was at Xcel Energy Center on Sunday morning but he didn't take part in the Wild's practice. Havlat is getting another rest day after returning from the Olympics and is scheduled to practice Monday along with his Czech Republic teammate Marek Zidlicky.

Havlat talked about his Olympic experience in the locker room after catching up with his teammates for a few minutes.

"It was great experience," he said. "I had a chance to try it eight years ago and it was the same thing. Great to be around your countrymen and it was great to be in the [Olympic] village and seeing the other people. The whole atmosphere was great. Everybody enjoyed it, not just us but family members who were there, all the fans. It was a special atmosphere there."

Havlat said he was a little drained after his team was eliminated from the tournament, but he said he's excited to get back on the ice with his Wild teammates for Monday's practice.

"Couple of days to recharge," he said. "Good for us we have a game on [Wednesday] so we don’t have to play Monday like Detroit and Colorado. It’s going to be a little harder for them. ... It’s good to get back to my old routine. Everything I need is here. Get a couple days of practice and then we have a big stretch of games in front of us. A lot of games. We want to make a push. There’s no easy games. Every game is big for us."

Bouchard tries to stay positive

Pierre-Marc Bouchard also stopped by the locker room Sunday and chatted briefly with reporters. Bouchard is still sidelined because of a concussion and it seems unlikely that he will be able to return this season.
 
Bouchard still is not able to do any physical activity other than take walks, but he said he's trying to remain positive.
 
"I think I’m pretty close," he said. "I can feel it. I know all my memory and vision is good. Now it’s just a question of my symptoms going away. The pressure in my head and the headaches here and there. They said the cognitive stuff is good. Now it’s just a question of my headaches going away.

"I know it’s going to be hard [to return this season]. But I’m [thinking] positive. I know it’s coming. ... I try to stay positive. You look at guys like Burnsie went through it and he’s back on the ice. There’s a lot of guys in this league who have gone through it. I know I’m just going to get out of it stronger."

Etc.

-- Rookie defenseman Clayton Stoner returned to practice after having sports hernia surgery in Germany on Feb. 12. However, Stoner left the ice after a few drills and didn't return. Coach Todd Richards said immediately after practice that he hadn't spoken to Stoner so he didn't have an update.

-- Richards said Mikko Koivu will meet the team in Calgary rather than fly back here from Vancouver. Niklas Backstrom and Antti Miettinen will return to Minnesota and might practice with the team on Tuesday.

-- Wild assistant coaches and former U.S. Olympians Mike Ramsey and Bob Mason wore Team USA jerseys under their Wild jackets at practice. That drew some laughs when the team gathered before practice.

-- Shane Hnidy got stung by a high stick from Burns during a team drill but he stayed on the ice and finished practice.

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