Russo's short takes: Oct. 14

  • Updated: October 13, 2007 - 10:19 AM

The mystery of the flying puck

Call it CSI: Orange County, but maybe the most comedic moment of the Wild-Ducks series came two weeks after when Anaheim coach Randy Carlyle insinuated that Wild enforcer Derek Boogaard, not exactly a marksman, shot a puck so accurately during the Game 5 warmup that he nailed Teemu Selanne above the right eye. "Where he got hit and the position he was on the ice, the trajectory of the puck had to come from the other end," Carlyle said.

Reminded of Carlyle's accusation, Boogaard said, "I should have 10 goals by now if I was able to hit Selanne in the head from where they said I shot it from."

Wild assistant GM/forensic expert/witness Tom Lynn said, "Selanne got hit ... because a puck was shot at the goal by their player, traveled around the glass to the left, hit one of their ridiculous stanchions and bounced straight out and hit him."

You gotta send a message early

All coaches have tricks to send messages to their players. Columbus coach Ken Hitchcock has no doubt Wild coach Jacques Lemaire was doing just that when he blasted his team after stealing a 1-0 season-opening victory vs. Chicago. "If you're not good in the first 20 games, you're out of the race, playing catch-up," Hitchcock said. "The foot's on the pedal now. The points you lose in October and November always come back to bite you."

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    The Wild hasn't forgotten Anaheim, but players say Sunday night's game is about victory, not retribution for past abuse.

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