Wild notes: Coyle, Niederreiter seek to end struggles

  • Article by: MICHAEL RUSSO , Star Tribune
  • Updated: March 22, 2014 - 12:42 AM

Coyle, Niederreiter mired in scoring slumps.

hide

Charlie Coyle moved down the right wing on Monday during the Wild’s 4-1 loss in Boston. Coyle has scored only seven goals in 58 games this season after having a strong training camp.

Photo: CHARLES KRUPA • Associated Press,

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

With 12 games left in the regular season, the Wild can expect to face opponents playing as if their season is on the line.

First up? The injury-riddled Detroit Red Wings, who enter this weekend’s home-and-home series with the Wild with their 22-season playoff streak in jeopardy.

The Wild needs similar desperation down the stretch, especially from two youngsters.

Charlie Coyle, 22, and Nino Niederreiter, 21, play significant roles and have been up and down lately.

Coach Mike Yeo met with both before Tuesday’s game at the New York Islanders.

“The first thing I said is, ‘What do you guys have in common?’ ” Yeo said. “Age wasn’t the answer. It’s size. These guys have to play big, and we need them to play big. Both these guys have played their best hockey when they’ve played a physical brand of hockey, when they’re finishing checks, absorbing hits, controlling the puck, they’re engaged in the physical part of the game. And then everything else is following suit.

“We want these guys to create, we want these guys to be a factor offensively, but that’s only going to happen when the game is consistently there.”

Thursday night at New Jersey, the Dany Heatley-Coyle-Niederreiter line struggled. At Friday’s practice, Niederreiter skated on a line with veterans Matt Cooke and Kyle Brodziak, while rookie Erik Haula, scratched in the past two games, skated on the left side of Coyle and Heatley.

Earlier this season, the Jason Zucker-Coyle-Heatley line developed good chemistry. Zucker, out for the season because of a quadriceps injury, and Haula have similar speed.

“That’s the first thing I thought of when I saw the lineup,” Coyle said. “You never know what different combinations will click, but I like a guy with speed on the wing, and Haula’s kind of like a Zucker there. I think it will be good.”

Fighting the puck

Coyle has seven goals and 20 points in 58 games. Niederreiter has 12 goals and 33 points in 70 games. Both admit they’re frustrated.

“I personally put the biggest pressure on myself,” Niederreiter said. “Every night I’m going out there trying to play the same style game and when you have chances and don’t put them in, that’s where you get frustrated.

“Obviously, you think about it. Against the Isles, I had two great chances — one early on the breakaway, one on the power play at the end. Those are chances you have to put in and those are the chances where you look back and get frustrated.”

It’s no coincidence that Niederreiter struggled Thursday in New Jersey, losing battles all game. Similarly, you can tell Coyle isn’t happy.

“Sometimes it’ll get in your head,” he said. “You want to help contribute. But you’ve got to not let it. Everybody goes through slumps and all that. If I’m not scoring and we’re playing good and we’re winning, then it’s fine.

“But I want to help contribute and help this team win in whatever that entails. I want to bring my game every night, be consistent and just make something happen every shift, be a difference maker no matter what that is.”

Yeo wants Coyle and Niederreiter to stop worrying about their lack of scoring.

“When a young kid is pressing or he’s thinking he has to score a goal, other parts of their game falter,” Yeo said. “My focus for them is to concentrate on having a good game and the results will come.”

No suspension

Nate Prosser wasn’t reprimanded by the NHL for his elbowing major Thursday on the Devils’ Tim Sestito, who was injured as he tried to check the Wild defenseman.

“I didn’t know what really happened until I saw the replay,” Prosser said. “I was pretty sure I didn’t get him with my elbow, and it obviously wasn’t intentional.

“As soon as the puck got dumped in, I knew the line we were out against and I saw some guys barreling down. He probably took 10 strides before he got to me, so he’s at full speed. So I knew he was coming and that was a natural reaction to somewhat protect myself.”

Etc.

• A scoring change from Thursday’s game resulted in Zach Parise losing a goal and Ryan Suter gaining one. Suter’s shot on the Wild’s first goal was not tipped in by Parise but went in off a Devils player.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

NY Mets 6 Bottom 8th Inning
Miami 7
Philadelphia - WP: C. Hamels 7 FINAL
Atlanta - LP: J. Teheran 0
Boston 3 Top 10th Inning
Tampa Bay 3
Minnesota - WP: P. Hughes 6 FINAL
Baltimore - LP: K. Gausman 4
Pittsburgh 4 Bottom 7th Inning
St. Louis 2
Milwaukee 2 Bottom 7th Inning
Chicago Cubs 3
Detroit 2 Bottom 1st Inning
Cleveland 0
Seattle 0 Bottom 1st Inning
Oakland 2
San Francisco 2 Suspended
Colorado 2
Arizona 0 Bottom 1st Inning
San Diego 0
San Francisco - T. Hudson 4:40 PM
Colorado - F. Morales
Washington - G. Gonzalez 7:10 PM
Los Angeles - R. Hernandez
Texas - C. Lewis 7:10 PM
Kansas City - Y. Ventura
Green Bay 9/4/14 7:30 PM
Seattle
Buffalo 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Chicago
New Orleans 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Atlanta
Minnesota 9/7/14 12:00 PM
St. Louis
Cleveland 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Pittsburgh
Jacksonville 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Philadelphia
Oakland 9/7/14 12:00 PM
NY Jets
Cincinnati 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Baltimore
Washington 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Houston
Tennessee 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Kansas City
New England 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Miami
Carolina 9/7/14 3:25 PM
Tampa Bay
San Francisco 9/7/14 3:25 PM
Dallas
Indianapolis 9/7/14 7:30 PM
Denver
Utah State 7 FINAL
Tennessee 38
SMU 0 FINAL
(10) Baylor 45
Miami-Florida 7:00 PM
Louisville
Arizona 9/4/14 7:00 PM
TX-San Antonio
Pittsburgh 9/5/14 6:00 PM
Boston College
Washington St 9/5/14 9:30 PM
Nevada
SMU 9/6/14 11:00 AM
North Texas
Fla Atlantic 9/6/14 11:00 AM
(2) Alabama
Buffalo 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Army
(24) Missouri 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Toledo
Arkansas State 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Tennessee
(7) McNeese State 9/6/14 11:00 AM
(22) Nebraska
Central Mich 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Purdue
Akron 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Penn State
Western Ill 9/6/14 11:00 AM
(14) Wisconsin
(20) Kansas State 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Iowa State
(4) Oklahoma 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Tulsa
Western Ky 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Illinois
SC State 9/6/14 11:30 AM
(16) Clemson
Navy 9/6/14 12:00 PM
Temple
UAB 9/6/14 1:00 PM
Miss State
South Alabama 9/6/14 1:00 PM
Kent State
New Mexico St 9/6/14 1:00 PM
Georgia State
Colorado 9/6/14 2:00 PM
Massachusetts
Fresno State 9/6/14 2:00 PM
Utah
(2) Eastern Wash 9/6/14 2:00 PM
(25) Washington
(15) USC 9/6/14 2:30 PM
(11) Stanford
Ohio U 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Kentucky
Middle Tennessee 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Minnesota
Northern Ill 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Northwestern
Missouri State 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Oklahoma State
Ball State 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Iowa
Maryland 9/6/14 2:30 PM
So Florida
Eastern Mich 9/6/14 3:00 PM
Florida
Georgia Tech 9/6/14 3:00 PM
Tulane
(18) Ole Miss 9/6/14 3:30 PM
Vanderbilt
Old Dominion 9/6/14 5:00 PM
NC State
(8) Michigan State 9/6/14 5:30 PM
(3) Oregon
(19) Arizona State 9/6/14 6:00 PM
New Mexico
Louisiana Tech 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Louisiana
San Jose St 9/6/14 6:00 PM
(6) Auburn
East Carolina 9/6/14 6:00 PM
(9) So Carolina
Duke 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Troy
Idaho 9/6/14 6:00 PM
ULM
(15) Sam Houston St 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(13) LSU
Michigan 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(17) Notre Dame
Lamar 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(21) Texas A&M
Northwestern St 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(10) Baylor
BYU 9/6/14 6:30 PM
Texas
Citadel 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(1) Florida State
San Diego St 9/6/14 7:00 PM
(23) North Carolina
Virginia Tech 9/6/14 7:00 PM
(5) Ohio State
Memphis 9/6/14 9:00 PM
(7) UCLA
Colorado State 9/6/14 9:15 PM
Boise State
Air Force 9/6/14 9:15 PM
Wyoming
Oregon State 9/6/14 9:30 PM
Hawaii
Texas Tech 9/6/14 10:00 PM
Texas-El Paso
Ottawa 10 FINAL
Montreal 20
Winnipeg 30 FINAL
Saskatchewan 35
Toronto 12 FINAL
Hamilton 13
Edmonton 3:30 PM
Calgary
Indiana 18 2nd Qtr 10:00
Chicago 16
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: Which local pro team are you most excited about?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close