By Brian Stensaas
Big news out of Wild practice today. Barring any setbacks, Marian Gaborik said he feels he will return to the lineup Sunday afternoon against Edmonton.
Gaborik will travel with the team to New Jersey this afternoon. But he said playing tomorrow night against the Devils is unlikely. Instead, he’ll wait for the Oilers.
“We’ll probably shoot for Sunday’s game,” Gaborik said after an hourlong practice this morning. “Hopefully everything will progress. Hopefully I’ll be more pain free each day and go from there.”
Gaborik has played in just six games this season and underwent hip surgery Jan 5.
Coach Jacques Lemaire has said all along that the decision to return is the player’s. So this means it is a good bet Sunday will be the day.
Gaborik today skated on a line with Peter Olvecky and Dan Fritsche – two lineup regulars.
“I don’t feel 100 percent; I don’t feel close to 100 percent,” Gaborik said. “I don’t think I will be playing to my potential until next year. But I want to get close to it. Obviously to be out there, to do drills, to laugh, to just have fun out there. It’s been a long time since I experienced it. Hopefully it will translate into games.”
So there you have it. Sounds like the next 24 hours are big, pain-wise.
As if Wild fans aren’t smiling enough at this news, here’s another nugget you might like:
A certain young player was filling out his NCAA basketball bracket this morning and was told to just write UCONN should he fancy the Huskies. He did – only on the sheet, he printed “Yukon.”