By Michael Russo
Afternoon everyone. Incredible day here in Calgary. It’s got to be in the high 60s. Not a cloud in the sky.
Just came from the skates, where Calgary coach Jim Playfair is under siege for the Flames’ horrendous road record.
Interesting moment from the skate, but with the TV cameras pointed at him, Playfair used a question I asked to send a message directly to his players.
I asked why the Wild has been able to “figure it out” on the road and the Flames have not, and Playfair said, “I think their leaders have taken it upon themselves to listen to their coach.”
Wild bench boss Jacques Lemaire said Wes Walz (back) would be a gametime decision. It’s completely up to Jacques whether he plays because Walz says he’s 100 percent and is itching badly. If he plays, I’m thinking Dominic Moore and Derek Boogaard will be scratched because Jacques loved the work Parrish-Koivu-Hall and Veilleux-Smith-Radivojevic provided on the fourth line against Edmonton. Boogaard was scratched last game at Calgary, and the Wild was on the verge of winning until the Flames scored late and won in shootout. So Lemaire could just stick Walz back in between Demitra and Gaborik.
If Walz doesn’t play, I assume Rolston will play center again and Moore will be scratched again. Looks like Carney’s (sick the other night) a go, so I’m assuming Nummelin will be a scratch and Foster will play considering the aggressive forecheck Calgary offers at home.
Manny Fernandez (knee) did not practice this morning. He’ll be examined by Wild doctors when the Wild returns home tomorrow morning (the team is spending the night here tonight).
Injured Flames: Conroy will likely play, Playfair said, but Warrener and Yelle are out.
I’ll do my best to give updates the first two periods tonight. This game is televised nowhere incidentally, not even here, so there is no way you can see the game unless you hop on a plane, well, right this very second.