Wild notes: Sometimes, only a sucker throws a punch

  • Article by: MICHAEL RUSSO , Star Tribune
  • Updated: March 16, 2013 - 11:44 PM

– Tuesday’s lack of response by Wild players to rookie Jason Zucker being on the receiving end of a head shot from Anaheim’s Corey Perry has received criticism from fans in the Twittersphere.

Fans have argued Wild players on the ice should have retaliated at Perry, who was given a five-minute major, game misconduct and subsequent four-game suspension, or later in the game gone after one of the Ducks’ stars.

But Zenon Konopka, the Wild’s resident tough guy, explained why there was no vigilante justice.

“First of all, not one of us saw it,” said Konopka, who wasn’t on the ice during the incident. “When he was laying on the ice, everybody on the bench was like, ‘Did you see it? Did you see it?’ Not one guy saw it.

“But the big thing is, some would say, they’re the best team in the league. We have a power play. The best way at that point when we don’t even see the hit is score on the power play and win the game. That was our mentality.”

The Wild didn’t score on the five-minute power play. Because of that, it was still a 1-0 game, so Konopka said nobody would be foolish enough to then seek redemption and jeopardize the game.

“People have to understand, it’s a long year, it’s a lot of seasons,” Konopka said. “You can’t just think, ‘We need redemption right away.’

“As much as you have to ramp yourself up every game, especially me and [Mike] Rupp, you can’t let your emotions get the best of you or then you’re putting your team at a disadvantage.”

Also, this is not like the old days in the NHL when it was common for players to either leave the bench or instigate fights. There are big ramifications for that conduct now, from penalties to suspensions.

“Ten years ago, I played in the East Coast League, I grabbed guys in the hallway and we fought after the game. You would run down the hallway into the other guys’ dressing room,” Konopka said. “I mean, I played for [hard-nosed] John Brophy [in Wheeling].

“I wish the days were still like that, but they’re not. There’s this [NHL executive] named Mr. [Brendan] Shanahan that I don’t think would be too thrilled with me trying to fight another guy in the dressing room.

“You have to get redemption within the rules of the game. Do we push the rules sometimes? Absolutely. You can push the line, but you can’t drop over it.”

Shuffling the lineup

Coach Mike Yeo made no lineup changes on Saturday against Colorado, meaning Zucker and Nate Prosser didn’t play and Brett Clark didn’t make his Wild debut. Zucker has been cleared to return though.

Clark, a 36-year-old defenseman, was signed last week to provide depth and puts even more pressure on Justin Falk and seldom-used Prosser.

“As long as it makes the team better,” Falk said, referring to Clark’s signing. “You want to be part of the playoffs and part of a push, so either way you’re part of it. I can only control playing my best when I’m out there. The other decisions from other people are things I can’t control, so I’m not going to worry about it.”


• Zucker, almost exactly a year after leaving the University of Denver following his sophomore season, and Prosser, who signed with the Wild in 2010 out of Colorado College, attended Friday night’s DU-CC WCHA playoff matchup at Magness Arena. Zucker’s Pioneers beat Prosser’s Tigers in Game 1, 5-3. Rookies Jonas Brodin and Charlie Coyle came along for the ride.

• Rupp sustained a lower-body injury during a first-period scrap with former Wild draft pick Patrick Bordeleau. Yeo doesn’t think it’s serious.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions


San Francisco 4 Bottom 5th Inning
Pittsburgh 0
Minnesota 10/2/14 7:25 PM
Green Bay
Buffalo 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Chicago 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Cleveland 10/5/14 12:00 PM
St. Louis 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Atlanta 10/5/14 12:00 PM
NY Giants
Tampa Bay 10/5/14 12:00 PM
New Orleans
Houston 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Baltimore 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Pittsburgh 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Arizona 10/5/14 3:05 PM
Kansas City 10/5/14 3:25 PM
San Francisco
NY Jets 10/5/14 3:25 PM
San Diego
Cincinnati 10/5/14 7:30 PM
New England
Seattle 10/6/14 7:30 PM
Washington 1 FINAL
Buffalo 6
Carolina 3 FINAL
Columbus 6
Pittsburgh 2 3rd Prd 8:43
Detroit 0
Montreal 0 2nd Prd 12:18
Chicago 0
Arizona 1 1st Prd :53
Edmonton 1
Fla Atlantic 10/2/14 6:00 PM
UCF 10/2/14 6:00 PM
Arizona 10/2/14 9:30 PM
(2) Oregon
Louisville 10/3/14 6:00 PM
San Diego St 10/3/14 9:00 PM
Fresno State
Utah State 10/3/14 9:15 PM
(18) BYU
(6) Texas A&M 10/4/14 11:00 AM
(12) Miss State
Ball State 10/4/14 11:00 AM
Iowa State 10/4/14 11:00 AM
(21) Oklahoma State
Marshall 10/4/14 11:00 AM
Old Dominion
Southern Miss 10/4/14 11:00 AM
Middle Tennessee
(20) Ohio State 10/4/14 11:00 AM
Purdue 10/4/14 11:00 AM
Florida 10/4/14 11:00 AM
SMU 10/4/14 11:00 AM
(22) East Carolina
Virginia Tech 10/4/14 11:30 AM
North Carolina
Eastern Mich 10/4/14 1:00 PM
North Texas 10/4/14 1:30 PM
Massachusetts 10/4/14 1:30 PM
Tulsa 10/4/14 2:00 PM
Colorado State
New Mexico 10/4/14 2:30 PM
TX-San Antonio
(3) Alabama 10/4/14 2:30 PM
(11) Ole Miss
(14) Stanford 10/4/14 2:30 PM
(9) Notre Dame
(17) Wisconsin 10/4/14 2:30 PM
Navy 10/4/14 2:30 PM
Air Force
(7) Baylor 10/4/14 2:30 PM
(4) Oklahoma 10/4/14 2:30 PM
(25) TCU
Wake Forest 10/4/14 2:30 PM
(1) Florida State
NC State 10/4/14 2:30 PM
Buffalo 10/4/14 2:30 PM
Bowling Green
Ohio U 10/4/14 2:30 PM
Central Mich
Oregon State 10/4/14 3:00 PM
Vanderbilt 10/4/14 3:00 PM
(13) Georgia
Kansas 10/4/14 3:00 PM
West Virginia
Kent State 10/4/14 4:00 PM
Northern Ill
South Alabama 10/4/14 5:00 PM
Appalachian St
Texas-El Paso 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Louisiana Tech
(15) LSU 10/4/14 6:00 PM
(5) Auburn
UAB 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Western Ky
Texas Tech 10/4/14 6:00 PM
(23) Kansas State
Michigan 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Hawaii 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Toledo 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Western Mich
ULM 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Arkansas State
Georgia State 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Idaho 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Texas State
Memphis 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Arizona State 10/4/14 6:30 PM
(16) USC
So Carolina 10/4/14 6:30 PM
Pittsburgh 10/4/14 6:30 PM
Miami-Florida 10/4/14 6:30 PM
Georgia Tech
(19) Nebraska 10/4/14 7:00 PM
(10) Michigan State
UNLV 10/4/14 7:00 PM
San Jose St
Ga Southern 10/4/14 7:00 PM
New Mexico St
California 10/4/14 9:30 PM
Washington St
Utah 10/4/14 9:30 PM
(8) UCLA
Boise State 10/4/14 9:30 PM
Winnipeg 10/3/14 6:00 PM
Calgary 10/3/14 9:00 PM
Edmonton 10/4/14 3:00 PM
Brt Columbia 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters





question of the day

Poll: Which local pro team are you most excited about?

Weekly Question