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Continued: Homecoming Day for Wild's Coyle

  • Article by: MICHAEL RUSSO , Star Tribune
  • Last update: March 17, 2014 - 12:30 AM

“I think that injury really threw him for a loop,” Chuck Coyle said. “It’s the first time he’s really been hurt. Every coach has really liked him at center and he likes playing it, too. So I think that mind-set of being in a defensive role and all the responsibilities that come with it have probably hurt him a little offensively. I don’t know what it is, but I think he just needs a little bit of confidence.”

Yeo isn’t worried. Besides being comfortable playing Coyle in any situation, Yeo is confident the point will come where everything clicks for Coyle. The only question is whether it happens this season.

Yeo equates it to Mikael Granlund. Granlund came into his rookie season in 2012-13 with high expectations, didn’t achieve them, returned home to Finland during the offseason, worked valiantly to improve on the areas that needed to get better and has broken through dramatically this season.

“This is only going to make [Coyle] stronger,” Yeo said.

Coyle has been a gym rat since the seventh grade. His work ethic is impressive for a youngster, and he has all the tools to become a future top NHLer. In addition, Yeo says Coyle has “got the pro side of it figured out.”

The most important thing Monday, Chuck Coyle said, is for his son to try to zone out all his friends and family members and just concentrate on playing a good game to help the Wild win, which will be no easy task against the best team in the Eastern Conference, winner of eight games in a row.

“Charlie doesn’t really get shaken too much. He’s pretty good staying on an even keel and pretty good under pressure,” Chuck Coyle said. “There’s going to be a lot of people with signs, a lot of people yelling at him, and I just don’t want him to get too worked up.

“I know he’ll be excited, and hopefully playing at home lights a little fire under him.”

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  • Wild forward Charlie Coyle, right, has seven goals and 13 assists in 55 games this season, his second in the NHL.

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    6:30 p.m. Monday  • TV: NBCSN (100.3-FM)

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