Harding hits the ice with Wild teammates for first time in weeks

The Wild’s backup goalie has adjusted his treatment for MS and still hopes to contribute this season.

hide

Wild goalie Josh Harding

Photo: Carlos Gonzalez, Star Tribune

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

 

Josh Harding could feel it. And he’s pretty sure those around him could see it, too.

The Wild goalie was struggling. He was scared.

“You think about hockey, and you think about how your life is going to change,” he said.

This, though, is looking back. And that’s something Harding sounds loath to do. He was speaking to a few media members at midday Thursday after having taken to the Xcel Energy Center ice with some teammates for the first time in weeks. It was a small step, but a thrilling one; Harding arrived early, warmed up and waited. And then, getting on the ice?

“It’s a big step for me,” he said. “Hopefully it just keeps going the right way.”

Harding was diagnosed last fall with multiple sclerosis. He and his doctors hoped proper treatment could contain it. But after his body didn’t react well to medication, he was put on injured reserve Feb. 12, then started a weeks-long process trying to find the right treatment combination.

It was not easy.

“It’s frustrating, more than anything,” Harding said. The problem, he said, is that everybody dealing with the disease is different. There is no standard operating procedure.

“The slope I was taking, I could feel it,” Harding said. “I think everybody around me was noticing, too. I was going downhill, and [after] a couple of days you wonder if you’re going to get better. The scariest thing was when I tried some things that were supposed to help me and they didn’t. And that was when it started getting to me, that this might be serious. … That’s why it’s very exciting for myself to feel better this last week and a half. I think we’ve found the right solution.”

Harding and his doctors feel they have a regimen that will work. For the past two weeks Harding has been working out, trying to get stronger and back into shape. For the past 10 days or so, he said he has felt great.

“I think we kind of got it under wraps here,” he said. “Just a little more tweaking. Other than that, I’ve felt good. I’ve been feeling like I have energy, been working out hard, and now skating a couple times. I’m excited. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel, and it’s a good experience.”

But that doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll see Harding in a game any time soon. First he has to get stronger, he has to take part in some practices and see how he reacts. But:

“He’s getting close,” Wild coach Mike Yeo said. “And that’s a great thing. We’re hoping that this is a great story. I think he looks great. Physically he’s feeling a lot better. We don’t have a time frame, we don’t know what it is. But we’re anxious to get him back, that’s for sure.’’

No more anxious than Harding. But he knows he has to be patient. As good as he feels, he’s skated only twice on his own and taken shots once.

But Harding said he feels the process is in place. His medication is working, he is making sure to keep working out, getting enough rest and eating well.

“Just have to keep going forward,” he said. “The way I’ve been feeling, we’re going to keep pushing it. And, hopefully, get back out there and do whatever I can do to help the team. That’s what I want to do.’’

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Baltimore 2 FINAL
Detroit 15
NY Yankees 5 Bottom 9th Inning
Philadelphia 5
Northeastern 1 FINAL
Boston 2
Miami-Fla 1 FINAL
Miami 7
Pittsburgh 8 Top 9th Inning
Toronto 6
San Francisco 2 Bottom 3rd Inning
Oakland 5
Cleveland 0 Top 4th Inning
Cincinnati 1
Boston College 0 Bottom 1st Inning
Boston 0
Arizona State 4:10 PM
Arizona
Boston 6:00 PM
Cleveland
LA Lakers 6:00 PM
Charlotte
Sacramento 6:00 PM
New York
Houston 6:30 PM
Atlanta
Utah 7:00 PM
Memphis
Washington 7:00 PM
Chicago
Milwaukee 8:00 PM
Denver
Nashville 6:00 PM
New Jersey
Calgary 6:00 PM
Philadelphia
Washington 6:00 PM
Columbus
Buffalo 6:30 PM
Tampa Bay
Toronto 6:30 PM
Florida
Ottawa 7:00 PM
Minnesota
NY Islanders 7:30 PM
Dallas
Anaheim 8:00 PM
Arizona
Los Angeles 8:30 PM
Edmonton
San Jose 9:00 PM
Vancouver
Ole Miss 6:00 PM
Alabama
Eastern Mich 6:00 PM
Ball State
Kent State 6:00 PM
Bowling Green
Ohio 6:00 PM
Buffalo
Georgetown 6:00 PM
Butler
Toledo 6:00 PM
Central Mich
Rhode Island 6:00 PM
Dayton
Youngstown St 6:00 PM
Detroit
North Carolina 6:00 PM
Georgia Tech
Loyola-Maryland 6:00 PM
Holy Cross
Iowa 6:00 PM
Indiana
Akron 6:00 PM
Miami-Ohio
Army 6:00 PM
Navy
Maryland 6:00 PM
Rutgers
Kennesaw St 6:00 PM
USC Upstate
Jacksonville 6:00 PM
Fla Gulf Coast
Lipscomb 6:00 PM
Northern Ky
Stetson 6:30 PM
North Florida
Wright State 7:00 PM
Ill-Chicago
Western Mich 7:00 PM
Northern Ill
Nebraska Omaha 7:00 PM
North Dakota
Houston Baptist 7:00 PM
Abilene Christian
NC State 8:00 PM
Clemson
Texas A&M 8:00 PM
Florida
Kentucky 8:00 PM
Georgia
West Virginia 8:00 PM
Kansas
Auburn 8:00 PM
Missouri
Michigan 8:00 PM
Northwestern
Villanova 8:15 PM
Creighton
Longwood 55 FINAL
Gardner-Webb 63
Charleston Southern 26 2nd Half 6:06
Presbyterian 40
Coastal Carolina 5:00 PM
UNC-Asheville
NJIT 6:00 PM
UMass Lowell
West Virginia 7:00 PM
Kansas State
TCU 7:00 PM
Texas
Fresno State 8:00 PM
Air Force
San Jose St 8:00 PM
Boise State
Nevada 8:00 PM
Colorado State
UNLV 8:00 PM
San Diego State
Wyoming 8:00 PM
Utah State
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: How will the Wild finish out the season?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close