The Minnesota Wild have not played a game since Feb. 2 against the Colorado Avalanche. A game, which, forward Marcus Foligno was held out of because of a positive COVID test, and the following snowball of players on the NHL’s protocol list piled high.
Up to 13 players at one point, have represented the Wild on the protocol list, forcing the league to postpone a total of seven games.
All of the waiting and worrying about the health and safety of these players might come to a muted conclusion on Tuesday, as Wild GM Bill Guerin is expecting the team to be back on the ice in the Staples Center to face the Los Angeles Kings.
GM Bill Guerin expects the #mnwild to resume Tuesday in LA and the league to soon announce the reshuffling of the Wild schedule.— Michael Russo (@RussoHockey) February 12, 2021
As Michael Russo noted, the NHL will have their work cut out for them to reschedule the seven postponed games throughout the next few months of the regular season. The league did prepare a 7-10 day gap between the end of the season and the start of the playoffs, just in case they needed to postpone matches—so they will be using that all they can.
The New Jersey Devils, Buffalo Sabres, Vegas Golden Knights and Philadelphia Flyers are just some other prime examples of teams that have had their schedule shifted through this first month of action, so expect a lot more press releases of rescheduled games in the near future.
While the Wild still have several players on the COVID protocol list, they were able to practice on Friday, with some players returning from lengthy injuries, but the roster will still be a little thin.
Guerin thinks the #mnwild will rely on "quite a few depth guys" to fill out lineup Tuesday vs. Los Angeles.— Sarah McLellan (@sarah__mclellan) February 12, 2021
No one knows for sure when players will be able to come off the protocol list and return to a relatively safe practice, but the Wild have a total of 12 players still on it as of Thursday night, so we might see the bottom half of the roster against the Kings mostly formed by the Iowa Wild.
At least there’s some positivity heading into the weekend; knowing that we are just a few days away from watching the Wild play again.