Originally posted on Fox Sports North  |  Last updated 2/9/12
THURSDAY'S STORY LINE: Home sweet home. Home isn't a place the Wild have seen a lot of the last few months. Minnesota has played 20 of the last 29 games on the road and they are looking forward to unpacking their suitcases and being at home for awhile. Minnesota will play 18 of their final 29 games in St. Paul. "It has been a long stretch on the road, it is something where you don't realize when you are in it, but is going to be nice. We haven't had a long stretch of games at home for a while," said Nick Schultz. The Wild have fared well at home this season with a 13-7-3 record and they need to take advantage of their home-heavy schedule down the stretch to the playoffs. "It is nice, but we have to take advantage of it. I think we have been a strong team at home, I think we have been a tough team to play against at home. We enjoy playing in front of our home crowd, but having said that there are no guarantees this time of year. Teams are fighting for their playoff lives, every game is meaningful and every game is tough and we have to make it real tough on teams coming in here," said Yeo. The Wild will start their home-heavy schedule with a big boost as captain Mikko Koivu will return to the lineup after missing 8 games with an upper-body injury. The team is looking forward to having their captain back on the ice and in the locker room. "We know what he brings on the ice and in the locker room. It is big to have our leader back. He leads us on and off the ice and it is going to be a big plus to have him back, especially with such the young team we have too," added Schultz. HENRIK SEDIN UPDATE: Henrik Sedin, who injured his right ankle Tuesday in Nashville, is a game time decision tonight. Sedin, who has 54 points in 66 career games against Minnesota, took part in morning skate and will likely be ready to go tonight. HE SAID IT: "I expect a hard game from both teams. Obviously we are fighting for a spot in our conference and they are doing the same thing. This is an important two points for two teams. With Koivu being back tonight it gives them three pretty solid lines, it gives them their leader and a guy that is really good on draws and power play and penalty kill. They have given us real hard battles in this building and we are going to be ready for it." -- Alain Vigneault on tonight's game
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