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Wilderness Walk: World Junior Update Edition

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Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Morning Wilderness!. A little late today as we're a bit short staffed with people taking vacations and whatnot. Any ways, Updates from Helsinki as the World Junior Championships continue in Finland. Your Minnesota Wild draft picks went pointless in yesterday's action. Louis Belpedio, 2015 selection, had 0 points in a 10-1 shellacking of Switzerland, but he had 3 shots on goal. Joel Eriksson Ek had 0 points on 6 shots on goal, and Kaapo Kahkonen stopped 22 of 25 shots in FInland's win over Slovakia.

The Wild take on the Blues to round out 2015 tonight at 7 pm from Scottrade Center. Zach Parise is on the trip, but it sounds like he is nursing a leg injury and will not play tonight. Lines will be jumbled around a bit with Thomas Vanek moving to the Mikael Granlund line, and Charlie Coyle moving up to the wing on Mikko Koivu's line.

Not a ton happening around the league.

If we don't hear from you, everyone from Hockey Wilderness wishes everyone a Happy New Year.

On to the Walk, but first, your music selection.

This is an early scream-o band from the early 2000's. Thursday will take you on a journey with some solid guitar licks.

Wild News

Wild start season's longest road trip without two key pieces - TwinCities.com
A Wild team already struggling to win on the road might be without its best goal scorer and emotional leader for its longest trip of the season.

The Outdoor Game Manifesto - Minnesota Wild - Articles - Homepage - Wild Xtra

The allure is simple. Anyone who has spent any time around hockey either has a body of experiences playing the game outside while exposed to the winter elements, or they have heard people who do have those experiences (including most NHLers) t...

Wild looking to improve mediocre road record - StarTribune.com

The Wild is determined to rediscover its strong road play of last season's second half.

Looking Back on a Wild Year
The year is coming to an end, but before 2015 ends and 2016 rolls around, take a look back on everything the Wild accomplished in the past 365 days.

Yeo vs. Vanek: The Role of Creativity on the Wild - Minnesota Wild - Articles - Homepage - Wild Xtra
Here are the quotes:Vanek:The past five games, we’re not being creative enough in my opinion [in the offensive zone]. We’re sloppy through the neutral zone, we get it deep, we’re a little late on it and when we do get it, we just shovel it up t...

Forgot About Backs - Articles - Articles - Homepage - Wild Xtra
We all know Backstrom’s story at this point, how he went for unheralded 29 year old rookie to solid workhorse for the team during Josh Harding’s initial MS diagnosis. Because of that, he was signed to a somewhat foolish contract, and after two...

Wild: Outdoor practice offers glimpse of what's to come - TwinCities.com
Fifty-four days before their marquee game of this regular season, when the state of Minnesota finally gets to host an outdoor NHL game, the Wild practiced outside in their annual open-to-the-public event.

Wild heads outdoors for practice, prepping for February festivities - StarTribune.com
To protect themselves from the windy 25 degrees in Edina on Tuesday, Erik Haula and Justin Fontaine sported tuques on top of their helmets.

Parise will miss Wild's game at St. Louis; Kuemper sidelined with concussion - StarTribune.com
The Wild, 5-5-5 on the road, begins a four-game trip to St.

Enemy Eavesdropping

A Look at Allen's Shutouts - St. Louis Game Time
They didn't come easy

Lehtera's line giving Blues' offense a boost : Sports
Strong play on third linethat includes Jaskin and Fabbri is sparking the team.

Tending the Fields

NCAA Hockey 101: Boston University, breaking bad | Puck Daddy - Yahoo Sports
From Yahoo Sports: The Boston University Terriers did not have a good two-weeks-before-Christmas.

NHL News

New York Rangers vs. the snowball effect | Puck Daddy - Yahoo Sports
From Yahoo Sports: Fans would like to seem some urgency from a team that looks like a playoff elimination waiting to happen.

Top 10 games of 2015 (Puck Daddy Year in Hockey) | Puck Daddy - Yahoo Sports
From Yahoo Sports: (Puck Daddy presents its annual look back at the year in hockey. Check back every day through the New Year for our many lists and hot takes.)

Canadiens 'beat by a better team' in loss at Florida | Puck Daddy - Yahoo Sports
From Yahoo Sports: The Panthers have now won seven-straight games, tying a franchise record. Florida was 16 points back of the Habs on Thanksgiving, but now owns a one-point lead on Montreal for first place in the Atlantic Division.

Patrick Burke on bringing NHL, women's pro leagues together at Winter Classic | Puck Daddy - Yahoo Sports
From Yahoo Sports: Patrick Burke on women's outdoor game logistics, bringing NHL, NWHL,CWHL together (Q&A)

Ducks On Verge Of Becoming NHL's Most Dangerous Team
After a disatrous start to the season, the Anaheim Ducks are playing some stellar hockey. Don't let the results fool you, this is a dangerous team.

Kris Letang suffered 'hard headaches' after Jarret Stoll hit | Puck Daddy - Yahoo Sports
From Yahoo Sports: Letang has three documented concussions in the last five years. He missed the remainder of the regular season and the playoffs last year after suffering a head injury on a Shane Doan body check.

NHL -- Boston Bruins coach Claude Julien defying expectations
Claude Julien has been on the chopping block for years, but it should be no surprise that the Bruins coach is still around and still thriving.