Marcus Foligno didn't finish the regular season, but the Wild forward could suit up for the start of the playoffs.
After a knee-on-knee hit from the Avalanche's Kurtis MacDermid knocked him out of Friday's game, Foligno practiced Sunday at Xcel Energy Center as the team prepared for Game 1 on Monday in a first round, best-of-seven series against the Blues.
"It's the playoffs," Foligno said. "It'd feel wrong sitting out."
Foligno was hurt early in the first period of a 4-1 win over Colorado and "felt pretty brutal" after he was kneed by MacDermid, who was tossed from the game and later fined.
Not only did Foligno not have much feeling in his knee, but he also had a tingly sensation running down his leg. He wasn't sure what to expect but received "good news" from the doctors.
"Just something you gotta play through for a while, and I can do that," Foligno said. "Obviously, there's a little bit more equipment on the knee. But other than that, I feel pretty good skating wise, and I wouldn't be out there if I didn't feel like I could play. So, I feel pretty good."
If he's in the lineup on Monday, the Wild will be able to utilize one of its best tools to try to slow down St. Louis, and that's Foligno's unit with Jordan Greenway and Joel Eriksson Ek.
The Blues have nine 20-goal scorers, and their top line of Pavel Buchnevich, Robert Thomas and Vladimir Tarasenko teamed up for a jaw-dropping 73 points over their last 16 games.
"I'll be just fine in that sense of physical hockey and the demand of the ice time and things like that," Foligno said. "I wouldn't put myself or the team in that position if I couldn't do that stuff. I feel confident enough to play that way and have that impact for our team in that sense of the grind of the playoffs and the physical style I have to bring."
But don't expect the trio dubbed "GREEF" to concentrate solely on defense.
During the regular season, the three combined for 59 goals with Foligno (23) and Eriksson Ek (29) setting career highs.
"Our game allows us to be a shutdown line without really having to focus on being a shutdown line," Greenway said.
Mats Zuccarello also skated Sunday, rejoining linemates Kirill Kaprizov and Ryan Hartman.
The veteran winger hasn't played since suffering a lower-body injury April 22, but the team has been optimistic Zuccarello will draw in for Game 1. Like in Foligno's case, coach Dean Evason said Zuccarello will face St. Louis if he declares himself ready.
With Zuccarello and Foligno participating, the Wild had a fully attended practice, a sign the team could have everyone available for the start of the series. Captain Jared Spurgeon and defenseman Matt Dumba returned for the regular-season finale from respective upper-body injuries.
"I'm fortunate enough that it wasn't as bad as we thought it was going to be," said Spurgeon, who left the April 24 game at Nashville after getting hit into the boards.
Dumba ended up missing 12 games and mentioned it was important for him to try to get back up to speed before the playoffs.
"You kind of take two steps forward, one step back," Dumba said of his recovery. "But we went through the whole process, and it got me to here."
Based on Sunday's session, forwards Nick Bjugstad and Connor Dewar and defensemen Alex Goligoski and Jordie Benn could be the scratches.
The Wild assembled its reserves for the playoffs, adding 10 players from its minor league team in Iowa that will practice at Tria Rink in St. Paul.
Aside from calling up a third goaltender in Zane McIntyre, the Wild brought in forwards Mitch Chaffee, Joseph Cramarossa, Kyle Rau, Mason Shaw and Nick Swaney and defensemen Calen Addison, Kevin Czuczman, Joe Hicketts and Dakota Mermis.