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Xcel Energy Center bustling with Minnesota Wild development camp

If you read my Important Dates Fanshots entry then you know that the Minnesota Wild is in the middle of their annual Development camp. In fact, the Xcel Energy Center has been a flurry of hockey activity. A lot (27, actually) of the young Minnesota Wild players and prospects laced up their skates for development camp. It's the same names as last year like Colton Gillies, Cal Clutterbuck and Petr Kalus. But there are new guys, too like Cody St. Jacques, Steven Stanford and Justin Hodgman. And don't forget the fab four ( this years draft picks): Tyler Cuma, Marco Scandella, Sean Lorenz and Eero Elo. And other regular names like  James Sheppard, Benoit Pouliot and Brent Burns were working hard.

I saw Tyler Cuma (the link is to a YouTube video of Cuma - he sounds solid) on TV last night and he talked a good game. He seemed excited to be at the "X" and ready to prove his skills to the Wild coaches. The practices and scrimmages are closed to the public. That bums me out. I think it would be cool to head down to the Xcel and see the youngsters playing on the ice. It would be a way for the Wild to sell some merchandise and keep casual hockey fans interested during the off-season. Not to mention capitalizing on the summer tourism industry of St Paul and the surrounding areas. Does the Xcel offer tours? They should. With other tourist attractions like the Science Museum and the Landmark Center so close, it would be silly to let all of those tourism dollars walk on by.

Good luck at camp, boys!