Tyler Graovac is the only Wild player that will skate in his third of three preseason games tonight.
Graovac, who had three quality scoring chances Tuesday in Winnipeg after a so-so game Monday against Buffalo, will get a huge opportunity tonight. He'll center Jason Zucker and Nino Niederreiter against the Blue Jackets.
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"He's a guy that if he has a chance to make our team, he's a guy we feel can chip in a few shifts. He can provide a little offense for us, so give him some guys that can help him get to that game."
Thomas Vanek will play left wing with Charlie Coyle and Justin Fontaine for the second game in a row. Yeo called it the No. 1 line tonight and he says he wants to see more of them building chemistry. Some shots would be nice, too.
Ryan Carter was scheduled to play tonight, but Yeo said he's being kept out for precautionary reasons. He said he's sore from the other night in Winnipeg. Marc Hagel, who brought energy in Winnipeg, has earned a second game. Former Princeton guy that played the past few years to Iowa. He signed a two-way contract -- his first actual NHL deal -- at the combine in Buffalo in June and got misty-eyed because it meant so much apparently.
Defenseman Zach Palmquist, the pride of Minnesota State-Mankato, will make his kinda sorta pro debut.
"He's got some areas that I know we can work on and some areas he can be a little heavier in his game," Yeo said. "But I've been real impressed with his poise, the way he has fit in with the group. He looks confident out there, he moves the puck real well, his skating ability is real strong. For a defenseman, the way we like to play the game, that's a big plus."
Yeo said Jordan Schroeder (groin) didn't skate today but is expected to tomorrow and could play Saturday in Saskatoon against the Oilers. By the way, Oilers coach Todd McLellan said today that Connor McDavid could play one, not two, of the road games against the Jets and Wild. So the Wild may not see him.
Lastly, Yeo did acknowledge what we figured: The Wild made an organizational decision not to play Mike Reilly here because of the crowd reaction and the bad blood maybe with some players for his decision not to sign with Columbus.
Vanek, Jonas Brodin and Nate Prosser will wear the A's tonight.
Talk after the game.