Injury update: Nolan, Brunette

Posted on February 23rd, 2009 – 1:23 PM
By Brian Stensaas

In case you missed it in the post: Join Michael Russo for a live chat session Tuesday at 3 p.m. at startribune.com.

A couple of quick post-practice updates:
1. Owen Nolan, injured in Sunday night’s game at Chicago, is suffering from a “cracked toe,” according to Wild assistant GM Tom Lynn and is out at least for Tuesday’s game against the Kings at Xcel Energy Center. His status will be further evaluated.
2. Andrew Brunette, who missed the past two games, is expected to be back in for the Kings game, Lynn said.

(Updated at 2:15pm) OK – thanks for being patient. Yes, it’s Stensaas with you once again, back fresh from covering a light practice. Russo (once again …) is stuck in an airport due to mechanical problems with Northwest planes, meaning you all are stuck with me for another day. I’d love to share some of the texts I’ve gotten today, but the last thing Russo needs right now is to be further enraged. So I’ll let him divulge all the fun details from his travel day, if he so chooses. Me? I had a quick 58-minute flight home from Chicago this morning on a huge, 3/4 empty plane. One of the smoothest rides in the sky ever. Sorry, Mike.

I’m nearly certain he will make it back tonight and be ready to go at 3 p.m. tomorrow for his live chat on startribune.com. So get your questions ready and be prepared for some expert insight. This is something new we’re trying here at the Newspaper of the Twin Cities. So come join, won’t you?

All right, as for other hockey related news from today Kurtis Foster is back in the Twin Cities and practiced with the Wild. As has always been the case, Foster is on the roster (Hey, I’m a poet and I didn’t even know it …) and the salary cap. But, no, there isn’t word on when he might play. GM Doug Risebrough told me Foster “is available” whenever that time comes.

Foster, who accepted handshakes and pats on the back upon returning to the locker room today, is no dummy. He realizes the Wild’s six defensemen have “been set in stone” the majority of the season. So for now he’ll sit and wait. He played well in Houston and helped the Aeros win all six games he played. But it is a step up from the AHL to the NHL, so who knows how long Jacques Lemaire and Co. decide to give it a try with Foster.

All the local TV stations wanted a piece of Josh Harding today after his head-standing performance last night against the Hawks. But before the cameras showed up to practice (which was an optional and featured just 13 skaters) Marc-Andre Bergeron whistled a puck on net from the point that was so hard it fractured the tip of Harding’s stick before going into the back of the net. I guess that’s one way to get one by him …

And give it to Nolan for remaining upbeat. Not surprisingly, he was absent from the media throng, but did make a brief appearance to yell, “Uncle! What is this, a documentary?” to break up a deep interview Mikko Koivu was giving to a TV crew. Apparently, he and Koivu had someplace to be.

Like I said, barring some sort of other breakdown Russo WILL be back on tomorrow for Wild vs. Kings. Don’t forget that live chat at 3 p.m.

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