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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Some Friday night Wild tidbits and teases

Posted by: Michael Russo under Wild news, Wild training camp Updated: January 11, 2013 - 6:11 PM

The Wild players didn't skate today, but on Saturday they will have their final informal skate before the anticipated opening of training camp Sunday.

Saturday morning will be physicals.

I am hearing a couple tidbits:

1. Wednesday night at 7, I am hearing the Wild is looking to hold a scrimmage at the X. It would be open to the public.

But here is the really cool thing. There is a chance it will be televised on Fox Sports North with a pregame show. Obviously, going through the cost of broadcasting an intrasquad scrimmage is pretty unique, so we will see. But all signs point toward a 7 p.m. scrimmage.

Still some moving parts here, so stay tuned.

Most interesting will be if the Wild expands its camp roster for the game by bringing up the Houston Aeros (a lot of teams are bringing in their minor-league teams for a scrimmage) or at least a handful of the top prospects to get a good size for the scrimmage.

Training camp details will be released by the team soon.

2. As you know from Friday's paper, the season starts at home Jan. 19 against the Colorado Avalanche -- the first in a three-game homestand that continues Jan. 20 against Dallas and Jan. 22 against Nashville (Ryan Suter's first game vs. his old team).

Suter's first game in Nashville, I hear, will be March 9. Team's first road trip is to Detroit and St. Louis on Jan. 25 and 27.

3. As you know from Friday's paper, the season ends in Colorado on April 27. That is 48 games in 99 days. How much more condensed is this season than last? Last year's last 48 games were in 110 days. The big issue this season may be a lack of practice time. Honestly, there may be two-dozen practices.

4. We're all hoping the schedule can be officially released after the players ratify the deal Saturday at 7 a.m., HOWEVER, I am told the schedule can't be released by the NHL until the memorandum of understanding is signed by both the NHL and NHLPA, and as of tonight, it was not all complete.

5. The process of mini-plan season-ticket holders finding out what games they have now will begin once the schedule is released.

6. Single-game tickets go on sale Wednesday at 8 a.m. at the X. Ticketmaster starts at noon. As Craig Leipold indicated in Friday's paper, the team is ready to unveil some perks and incentives to fans to show them "how [bad] we feel" regarding the lockout that cost 34 games.

7. It's not signed off yet, but as of now, the trade deadline is April 3.

8. Hopefully you saw Friday's story on Andrew Brunette and Brian Rolston and other NHLers who may have retirement looming. If not, it's here.

Talk to ya Saturday.

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