ST. PAUL, Minn. Learning how to handle the grind of this lockout-shortened NHL season is one of the most difficult challenges teams will face, a constant trial-and-error in regard to travel and practice time, when to work players and when to rest them.
The Minnesota Wild travel more than any team in the NHL this year. Minnesota planned on changing its travel habits, possibly staying overnight in West coast cities more often and discovering how to make the most of the grueling schedule in which teams will play 48 games in 99 days this season.
The Wild stayed overnight in Vancouver following Tuesday night's loss to the Northwest Division-leading Canucks and flew back home on Wednesday. Minnesota didn't practice Wednesday because of the travel and held a morning skate before hosting the Colorado Avalanche on Thursday.
Then, after playing three games in four nights and traveling to Calgary and Vancouver during that span, the Wild lost 4-3 in a shootout to Colorado, a game which had Min...