The Minnesota Wild had a pair of injured players return to the practice ice on Wednesday, with Jared Spurgeon skating for half an hour and Matt Boldy returning in full. Frédérick Gaudreau has yet to return, though. Wild head coach Dean Evason shared that the plan is for Boldy to play in Minnesota’s Thursday night game, while Spurgeon is still working his way back.
Minnesota currently reps a 3-4-2 record and the ninth-most goals-for in the league. Both of those metrics should start looking stronger with the return of 22-year-old Boldy, who scored 31 goals and 63 points in 81 NHL games last season. The winger has become a focal point of the Wild offense, averaging 18-and-a-half minutes of ice time each game last year – a pace he maintained this year until his upper-body injury limited his playing time in his last matchup. Boldy has two points through two games so far this season.
And while Boldy’s return is exciting, the Wild lineup won’t look right until Spurgeon is back in the mix. The team captain has become a pinnacle two-way defender in the NHL, proving the value that defenders under 5’10” can provide if they have the right skill set. But Spurgeon has yet to play at all this season, suffering from an upper-body injury sustained in training camp. The Wild placed Spurgeon on long-term injured reserve, retroactive to the start of the season, on October 25th. This means that the soonest he could return is November 4th. He seems on pace to challenge that return date with a return to practice on Wednesday.