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Wilderness Walk: Difficult roster decisions looming

Your daily dose of Wild news, along with other interesting stories from around the NHL.

NHL: OCT 30 Wild at Blackhawks Photo by Melissa Tamez/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

It is usually a joyous occasion when a good player returns from a lengthy injury, but unfortunately the Minnesota Wild have been really fun since Ryan Hartman has been out. Maybe it’s just the association with his start to the season and the Wild’s horrifically parallel start, but it feels weird to have him back in the fold.

Anyways, Hartman is going to start participating in full practices soon and along with Brandon Duhaime, is slated to return to the Wild’s lineup within the next week or so. But, the only problem is that their replacements — Mason Shaw, Ryan Reaves, and sort of Sammy Walker — have been so fun to watch.

Shaw is going nowhere and Reaves has that veteran presence to carry him through any transaction or return from injury. So it does look like Walker will eventually be sent back down to the AHL. But, with Reaves’s addition and no subtraction from the roster, when everyone’s healthy, there will be an odd man out.

Maybe the solution will be a rotating fourth line that will feature Shaw, Reaves, Duhaime, and Connor Dewar — but we do know that Dean Evason likes his stability across all four lines. We’ll just have to see what happens, but it’s not going to be an easy decision.

That’s Wild

  • Anyways, speaking of Walker and his electric start to his NHL career, we’re going to enjoy ourselves and watch him play hockey. [Hockey Wilderness]
  • Calen Addison should probably play every game. [10K Rinks]

Off the trail...

  • An incredible story about Alex Ovechkin’s pursuit of the top goal scoring record. [ESPN]
  • And speaking of the Great 8, he scored his 800th career goal last night.