For all you hockey fans looking forward to that great goalie matchup tomorrow night in Montreal?
Hold your horses.
After an optional skate Wednesday at Xcel Energy Center, Wild coach Bruce Boudreau went out of his way to say that red-hot Wild goalie Devan Dubnyk might not be in the nets when the Wild plays the Canadiens there Thursday night.
What, no Dubnyk-Carey Price showdown? No on-ice 60-minute test to see which team has the NHL’s best goaltender?
“I don’t know who will be playing in goal tomorrow,” Boudreau said. “So everybody is assuming it will be Dubnyk. But, I mean, we have back-to-backs, and [Darcy Kuemper] played pretty good the last game. So we’re going to talk about it, and see who goes tomorrow.’’
Don’t worry. It would be highly unlikely after giving Dubnyk the day off Wednesday – he was not among those on the ice for the optional – that Boudreau would choose to sit the hottest goaltender in the league for a road game against the team currently leading the Eastern Conference’s Atlantic Division by five points.
With a back-to-back scheduled for Montreal and at the New York Rangers it’s not unlikely Boudreau will use both goaltenders. But it would be too bad to not be able to see Dubnyk and Price on the ice together.
Boudreau said Zach Parise was OK, “as far as I know.’’ Parise blocked a shot in Tuesday’s victory over Colorado. Parise did not take part in today’s optional skate.
Boudreau is looking at the up-coming back-to-back as a measuring stick for the team. “Yeah, we’ll see where we’re at,’’ he said. “We’re going to play a team that has played 19 home games and only lost two. So I mean, a very strong team all year. And then the next team, who a week ago was the best team in the league, just got kicked 7-2. They’ll be pretty mad sitting at home waiting for us. So we’ll have to be at our absolute best. We’ll see where that is.’’
And it’s not just the next two games. There is a game at Nashville. Columbus, San Jose, L.A. and Anaheim loom on the schedule. “You’ll find out a lot more about our team in these next ten games. We play good competition. And we’ll see where we’re at. It's a tremendous test for our club. Hopefully we can exceed expectations.’’
Boudreau said there is a chance Christian Folin could see some action in the next two games.