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.

Also find Russo on Facebook.

Email Michael to talk about hockey.

Harding questionable, Setoguchi out; Starting goalie up in the air; Latendresse, Zidlicky updates

Posted by: Michael Russo under Wild practice Updated: December 8, 2011 - 10:14 AM

I'll be on KFAN at 10:35 a.m. and 12:20 p.m. on whatever day today is, and I'll be on NHL Live on NHL Network at 2:55 p.m. CT

Afternoon from beautiful Manhattan Beach.

I just got off the phone with coach Mike Yeo, who along with the rest of the Wild was about to be wheels off the ground in San Jose.

They missed me.

Josh Harding sustained "sorta whiplash" last night and wasn't feeling great, but he got in a good workout today and feels a lot better, Yeo said. His status is questionable for tomorrow. My guess is he doesn't dress.

So who starts -- Matt Hackett or Niklas Backstrom?

Backstrom (groin) practiced today and looked good, Yeo said, so in the morning, the Wild will decide whether Backstrom or Hackett starts, Yeo said. It'll largely be up to Backstrom, but Yeo thinks at the very least he'll be available to back up.

As for Devin Setoguchi, he is sidelined with a lower body injury. That's all the Wild will say right now until he gets reevaluated by doctors. Like I mentioned last night, he is limping badly, wearing a soft cast on his right leg and was being consoled after the game by Yeo.

Yeo said he hopes he's not out long, but as the Wild's done all season, it's got to truck on and get contributions from others "because nobody's feeling sorry for us."

Frankly, it's unbelievable the amount of injuries the Wild has overcome this season. As Ken Hitchcock said last month, "sum of parts. They're interchangable."

The good news is, Yeo said, that concussed players Guillaume Latendresse and Marek Zidlicky are feeling better and are back in Minnesota skating daily. It's just a matter of conditioning because neither player has played in a long time.

As for the lineup against the Kings, Cal Clutterbuck will skate with Mikko Koivu and Dany Heatley, the second line will stay intact and Darroll Powe will be reunited with Kyle Brodziak and Nick Johnson.

Colton Gillies, scratched the past two games, will reenter the lineup and skate with Cody Almond and Brad Staubitz.

 

ADVERTISEMENT

Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT