The Wild’s practice session Tuesday was quieter than usual, which didn’t come as a surprise. The level of noise tends to decline when a team has only eight healthy forwards on the ice.
The roster remains so thin that assistant coach Darby Hendrickson supplemented the ranks for a second consecutive day. That allowed the Wild to assemble three makeshift lines for a practice at Xcel Energy Center, while it waits for news about ailing forwards Zach Parise, Mikael Granlund and Marcus Foligno.
None of those three practiced with the team Tuesday. Coach Bruce Boudreau had no updates on Parise, who had what the team called “a setback” Monday in his recovery from an undisclosed injury. Granlund (groin injury) is continuing to skate on his own and remains “a possibility” to return later in the week, and Foligno (broken facial bone) is expected to practice Thursday and could play Friday at Winnipeg.
Parise is scheduled to see a doctor Wednesday on the Wild’s day off. Through all the uncertainty, Boudreau was trying his best to be bullish regarding his roster.
“With [Parise] missing Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, I’m not promising that he’ll be on the ice Thursday or Friday or Saturday,” the coach said. “But I don’t know. Hopefully, he’s ready to go.
“Granlund is a possibility, maybe more in my eyes than the doctors’. I don’t know if he’ll be able to practice with us [Thursday], but there’s a possibility, I think. And Foligno, I think, for sure will practice with us Thursday, and hopefully be ready to play Friday.”
When Boudreau was asked whether Parise’s injury situation might alter the winger’s hard-charging style of play, he said he hadn’t thought about it, but he added “it worries me that something can happen to him.”
The Wild plans to call up some players Thursday from its AHL affiliate in Iowa for the weekend road trip, which also includes a game Saturday at Calgary. Trying to run a practice with so few players isn’t ideal, Boudreau said, but it can still be productive.
“It’s different,” he said. “But if you can get an hour of good skating, get something out of them with the lesser numbers, it’s amazing how much better shape you can get into.”
Quick trip to Iowa
Mike Reilly knows he can’t take it personally. The young defenseman was a victim of circumstances last Friday, when he was sent to Iowa so the Wild could recall forward Luke Kunin.
The Wild needed Kunin to help fill the void created by injuries to five forwards, but it had to create some space under the salary cap before it could recall him.
Reilly does not need to clear waivers before being sent down, and the Wild’s other young defenseman, Gustav Olofsson, does. So Reilly was tabbed to go to Iowa for a day.
Wild General Manager Chuck Fletcher said Reilly understood the reasoning behind the move. Reilly, who was recalled Saturday after the Wild’s overtime loss to Columbus, agreed — but he also didn’t hide his disappointment.
“I feel like things are going well, and I was building momentum,” Reilly said. “That’s definitely something I want to keep doing, and it sounds like I’ll get back in the lineup the next game.
“I belong here. There’s no question about it. The last two years, maybe at times, I definitely needed to go down. I think it helped a lot. I’m definitely a full-time [NHL] guy now; I believe that, and I can definitely make an impact and help this team win.
‘‘Right now, my mind-set is just on [the Wild] and just trying to get better and help the team.”
Darby dives in
Hendrickson, who retired from the NHL in 2004, took a spot on the third line Tuesday with center Joel Eriksson Ek and winger Daniel Winnik.
The 45-year-old skated hard for the entire one-hour practice, earning Boudreau’s gratitude.
“I give him full kudos for putting the stuff on and going out there and trying,” Boudreau said. “And for a guy that’s done it for two days and hasn’t been playing for 10 years, he’s done a pretty good job.”
Forward Eric Staal also appreciated Hendrickson’s willingness to pull extra duty.
“I think it’s cool,” Staal said. “It doesn’t happen every day. He may not be as quick as he was before, but he’s got some tools, some smarts. He doesn’t look out of place out there, that’s for sure.”
Staff writer Joe Christensen contributed to this report.