The Minnesota Wild have activated Mats Zuccarello from injured reserve and expect him to be in the lineup tonight against the Edmonton Oilers. Unfortunately, they’ve also moved Joel Eriksson Ek to IR with a lower-body injury, retroactive to October 17th.
Zuccarello, the Wild’s big offseason signing, was off to a disappointing start even before he got injured, recording zero points in his first four games while playing fewer than 15 minutes a night (his lowest average since his rookie season). Six penalty minutes, terrible possession metrics and a -6 rating didn’t endure him to many Minnesota fans early, but hopefully now at full health he can get back to his previous ability.
There’s no questioning that Zuccarello can be an effective NHL player, but signing a 32-year old to a five-year, $30MM contract always seemed concerning for a team in Minnesota’s position. It was one of the final moves former GM Paul Fenton was allowed to make before he was fired and replaced by Bill Guerin, and didn’t seem to jive with his previous moves to make the roster younger.
Minnesota is off to a dreadful start at 2-6, but did at least win their most recent game against the Montreal Canadiens. The team desperately needs more scoring, something that hopefully Zuccarello can provide now that he’s back on the ice.
This is going to be Louie Eriksson 2.0
Can’t – Eriksson’s a Swede & Zucc is “The Norwegian Hobbit Wizard.” Zucc has far fewer own-goals, as well. Besides, maybe Guerin can flip him back to NYR at the deadline for…a player to be named later…and some magic beans…
I don’t know what you smoke before you write this stuff
I take it you don’t know that Zucc’s moniker is “The Norwegian Hobbit Wizard” ? Not everybody is up on that one, but a former player who doubles as analyst came up with that one, not me. Eriksson had an infamous own-goal, when he stupidly back-passed the puck to his trailing D on a delayed penalty. His D-man wasn’t there, and neither was their netminder…own goal!
Mac’s just high on life !
I wish, Gerald, I wish. Just finished the leftovers from the other night. And am witnessing EDM getting shutout by Minne, Vancouver stomping the Dead Wings, and the Pens getting doubled up by the Swamp Kitties! Almost like Friday the 13th with a full moon, the way these games are playing out tonight.