It was "Hockey Day" in the state of hockey on Saturday February 9th and there was plenty of hockey played in the hockey wilderness of Minnesota. First of all there were big high school hockey games that were televised on FSN throughout the day. I am pretty sure that Minnesota is the only state that can draw a fair market share for televised high school hockey. In fact the Minnesota High School Hockey tournament in March at the Xcel Energy Center has set attendance records for high school hockey across the nation. You can bet that this MN Wild Freak will be at the "X" in March to watch the high schoolers work their magic and I participate in an office pool every year – I bet there aren’t too many other hockey bloggers that can say that – an office pool for high school hockey?!
Anyway, the Minnesota Wild appropriately participated in "Hockey Day Minnesota" with a special hosting of the New York Islanders at the Xcel Energy Center at 5pm. The Wild beat the Islanders in overtime 4-3 in front of a roaring Xcel crowd. Minnesota’s own Brian Rolston scored twice for the Wild and Bloomington native Wild winger Mark Parrish has this to say about playing on Hockey Day Minnesota:
"You know, not that we need any more incentive to play well for our fans and our state, but, on a day like today, it puts a little extra emphasis on it and makes it feel a little more special playing here than it does on just another Tuesday or Wednesday."
This MN Wild Freak didn’t think the Wild played any harder than any other day and I was actually surprised the game went to OT. Come on, the Islanders are last in the Atlantic Conference and have only won one game in their last ten. Jacques didn’t look too pleased with his Wild team either and I am sure he will have plenty to say on the plane as the Wild depart for a three game road trip.