By Michael Russo
Skoula, Skoula, Skoula. Skoula’s the best.
Sunday’s game time against Colorado has been changed to 6 p.m. from 5 p.m.
Also, for some reason, Major League Baseball would not agree to move Game 4 of the World Series to the afternoon despite the fact the Wild and Avs had a night game. Hockey always gets the shaft.
So the Wild and Avs will now play at 2 p.m. Central, 1 p.m. Mountain on Oct. 28. I, by the way, will be at Game 3 of the World Series on Oct. 27.
From the skate: Backstrom is starting (he was the first off, so I’m assuming). Jacques says Nummelin is playing. So I’d assume Carney or Foster is out:
Lemaire said, “I don’t think the player knows yet, so …”
In other words, I won’t tell you, although I think he should tell me everything.
Speaking of telling everything, Jacques was in a great mood this morning. He was giving all sorts of insight on how he deploys certain players like Boogaard and Sheppard during games or decides whether a Carney or Nummelin sits.
Just a taste, the Phoenix game. The Wild was dead energy-wise. Normally that would be a time to throw out Boogaard to rev things up, but Jacques said he never did that because he really felt in his gut that the Wild would eventually rally without some artificial move like that. He also said that he hasn’t been able to play Boogaard as much “because they’re all one-goal games.”
Same thing with Sheppard. Lemaire’s limited his ice time late in tight games because “then it’ll be in our net, and I hurt the kid.” But if he feels the games firmly under control, he’ll throw Sheppard a confidence bone and toss him on the ice, like he did with less than two minutes left the other night in Anaheim.
Jacques went on and on in ways he rarely does, and for a hockey geek like myself who often plays coach in the easiest seat in the arena — the press box — I was pretty riveted.
Okie Dokie (sp?), I have to do a podcast, or webcast, or whatever those things are called, now. Talk to you tonight from the game.
Incidentally, and I know this will make you all sad, but the blog will be kind of dormant with Michael Russo entries Wednesday-Saturday as I won’t be around the team, and in fact, won’t be back in the Twin Cities.
But I’m sure Kent Youngblood WILL blog (won’t you Kent?) while I’m gone, and perhaps I’ll blog from my couch during Saturday’s game as I take a rare game off and watch on TV like the rest of you.