SATURDAY'S STORY LINE: The Wild get one injured player back and lose another tonight in Calgary. Clayton Stoner (lower body) will be back in the lineup, Pierre-Marc Bouchard (lower body) missed practice the past two days andwill be out. Bouchard is day-to-day and will be re-evaluated when the team gets back to the Twin Cities.
Stoner has missed 5 games and Yeo is happy to have the big, physical defenseman back on the blue line. Yeo said Stoner brings an "edge to the back end" while playing a tight defensive game.
"Defensively he is very reliable. He executes the way we want him to execute," said Yeo. "He moves the puck quick and hard. When it is time to defend he defends hard," added Yeo.
Stoner is excited to get back in the lineup and is physically ready. "The groin feels good, I needed to rest it for a few days and try to strengthen in. Now it feels where I am comfortable to play with no pain," said Stoner.
After missing a few weeks of play Stoner said he and the coaching staff will watch his ice time tonight.
"The coaches are aware you haven't been in a game situation" Stoner noted, "they are going to watch your ice time and see how you are playing, see how you are moving your feet and just go from there. If you are feeling good and looking confident then you will play your regular ice time."
LINEUP NOTES: Justin Falk will be a healthy scratch. Mike Lundin will be a healthy scratch for thesixth time in the lastseven games. Greg Zanon, who was scratched Wednesday in Vancouver, will be back in the lineup. Niklas Backstrom will be back in net for the Wild. Backstrom is 5-0, with a 0.52 GAA in his last 6 games in Calgary.
HE SAID IT: "I think we had a couple really good practices up there and you could tell it was a breath of fresh air for us. It was good for us to get away and clear the heads a little bit and get refocused here on the second half of the season, and I liked our skate this morning. I think it was a quiet focus out there and I think we will be ready to start the second half to get back to our game." Yeo on Minnesota's trip to Banff