The Minnesota Wild gave up a lot to acquire Victor Rask earlier this season, but have only received ten games out of the 26-year old center after he suffered an injury and was forced out of the lineup. That’s about to change, as Rask has been activated from injured reserve today and is expected to make his return to the lineup tonight.
Rask was supposed to come into Minnesota and help them strengthen the middle of the ice, but had just two points through those ten games before going on injured reserve. In fact, he’d been demoted to the fourth line and played just over seven minutes in each of the games before his injury, a stark difference to the impact that Nino Niederreiter has made for the Carolina Hurricanes. Niederreiter, who was traded straight up for Rask, has 21 points in 22 games with the Hurricanes including 11 goals.
A return to form for Rask would be a huge addition for the Wild, who are currently in the midst of a last-second playoff race. The team has changed several of their key players this season but now sit in the final wild card spot in the Western Conference, just a point ahead of the hard charging Arizona Coyotes. If Rask could once again become the 48-point center he was in 2015-16 the Wild may have a good shot at doing some damage in the post season, but he’ll have to prove he’s healthy enough to contribute at all first.