Setoguchi enjoys return to Alberta

  • Article by: MICHAEL RUSSO , Star Tribune
  • Updated: November 9, 2011 - 7:50 AM

The Wild forward grew up in the province and had plenty of friends and family on hand for Tuesday night's game at Calgary.

CALGARY, ALBERTA - The first two games of the Wild's five-game trip provide right wing Devin Setoguchi with a homecoming of sorts.

Tuesday night at Calgary, Setoguchi was cheered on by 200 friends and family members, who caravanned from his tiny hometown of Taber, Alberta, 2 1/2 hours away. After the game, Setoguchi and the Wild were scheduled to fly to San Jose, where they will face the Sharks on Thursday.

Before being traded in June to the Wild, Setoguchi was part of that organization since being drafted eighth overall in 2005.

"It'll be good. I grew up in that organization," Setoguchi, 24, said. "I have a lot of friends that are there and a lot of people that I've met over the years, so I'm definitely excited to go back and say hi to them."

The Wild has an off night Wednesday and is staying over after Thursday's game, so there will be plenty of reunions. Several Wild players plan to get together with defenseman Brent Burns, who was traded in the Setoguchi blockbuster.

Setoguchi was especially looking forward to seeing Sharks forward Torrey Mitchell, his roommate of four years.

"I expect a good game from myself. It's going to be a fun trip," Setoguchi said.

First, he was worried about playing the Flames. He typically throws 80 people on the postgame guest list for a "quick hello, how are you and see you later."

Clutterbuck on the mend

Cal Clutterbuck missed Tuesday's game because of an upper body injury sustained when he fell awkwardly in a skirmish late in the second period Saturday against St. Louis.

Clutterbuck skated all of pregame warm-ups, but he was clearly grimacing throughout the morning skate and said his shot and physicality was affected.

"It's a little painful," Clutterbuck said.

Warren Peters was recalled and centered the fourth line, while Darroll Powe moved up to the third. Peters has scored four goals to go with four assists in 13 games for Houston.

Apartment hunting

There's a misconception that when youngsters are told they can move out of the team hotel and find their own place that they now have a secure roster spot.

As coach Mike Yeo said, "The message is delivered with a 'but. Don't get comfortable.'"

Defenseman Justin Falk knows this personally. Two weeks after he found an apartment in Minnesota last season, his play dipped and he was demoted to Houston. He spent the year living in a hotel in Houston while paying for his apartment in Minnesota.

"I'd stay in the hotel eight months here to keep that from happening again," Falk said, laughing. "I'm excited to be getting my own place again, but hopefully now this is the start of something good. I'm happy and confident and I can't let my play drop."


• Dany Heatley, acquired for Martin Havlat in July, is also excited about playing in San Jose.

"It's a fun rink to play in, whether you're a home or a visitor, it's a real loud building," Heatley said.

Asked if he thought he would receive a warm reception, Heatley joked, "Of course, I didn't do anything there," referring to the fact Ottawa fans jeer him for asking to be traded in 2009.

• The Wild will pay tribute to the late Derek Boogaard and his family during a ceremony before its 5 p.m. game against the Calgary Flames on Nov. 27.

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