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Wilderness Walk: Game Day Edition

We're back at it, facing off against Torts and his new team, the Columbus Blue Jackets

There's a new sheriff in town.
There's a new sheriff in town.
Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

The Wild's string of games facing surly opponents just got a little surlier as the Blue Jackets come to town under the leadership of fiery coach John Tortorella.  This marks the departure of former Wild coach Todd Richards, following a listless 0-7 start in which the Jackets never established their defensive game and have suffered from porous goaltending.  The expectations of the team were high to return to the playoffs, especially after the surprising acquisition of Brandon Saad, but the team has simply failed to launch this year, and Richards has become the casualty.

Of course that means the team will be extremely motivated facing the Wild, as they are seeing the effects of their terrible start and feeling them in more than just the loss column.  Richards was known more as a mild, players' guy and Torts is known for being anything but that.  His presence alone should provide some jump to the Jackets as they hit the ice in Saint Paul.  Fortunately, the Wild have had recent practice against teams in similar situations, and this time find themselves facing a winless but motivated opponent on their home ice.  The Wild will need to come out swinging, as the first home game after a road trip usually means dead legs in the first period.

It all makes for plenty of drama and another exciting game.  We dedicate today's musical selection to Todd Richards, and how he must be feeling today.  We Walk.

Wild News

Richards out, Tortorella to make Blue Jackets coaching debut against Wild -
The Wild will be facing a motivated bunch tomorrow night at Xcel Energy Center.

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His .785 SV% on high danger shots is easily the lowest of his career

Unfamiliar Defensive Trials Harass Wild
Normally a stout defensive team, the Minnesota Wild have struggled to keep the puck out of their net this season.

One on One - Minnesota Wild - Articles - Homepage - Wild Xtra
Fundamentally, these 1-on-1’s favor the defensemen skating backwards through the neutral zone into their D-zone.

30 Years Ago - Articles - Articles - Homepage - Wild Xtra
Looking back to the past on Back to the Future Day

Wild, Matt Dumba hope to nip early struggles in the bud -
Matt Dumba, the Wild's eccentric, captivating young defenseman, was the last player off the ice at practice Tuesday, the team's first since returning from a long road trip out West.

Keep Your Enemies Closer

The Cannon, a Columbus Blue Jackets community
Your best source for quality Columbus Blue Jackets news, rumors, analysis, stats and scores from the fan perspective.

On Frozen Pond

Gopher Hockey Notebook: Weekend recap, Lettieri to center and more - SB Nation College Hockey
Tidbits from the weekend include a recap of both the men and women's games, Vinni Lettieri playing center, Gopher commit Casey Mittelstadt playing for the US U-18 team, and the end of the B1G-HE Challenge

Off The Trail

The best NHL third lines
The Wild's third line isn't shabby.

Richards Out, John Tortorella In
Columbus has named John Tortorella as their new head coach. Will he be able to turn around the 0-7 Blue Jackets before it's too late?

Blackhawks' Duncan Keith out 4-6 weeks with meniscus injury -
Blackhawks star defenseman Duncan Keith will miss the next four to six weeks of the season after undergoing surgery to repair a torn meniscus.

Former Flames F Curtis Glencross says he's retiring at 32 -
After being unable to find work this offseason, Curtis Glencross has decided to hang up the skates at age 32.

NHL Three Stars: Price red hot; Crosby on the scoreboard; Ovechkin hits milestone | Puck Daddy - Yahoo Sports
From Yahoo Sports: Puck Daddy's Three Stars for Tuesday, Oct. 20


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