Erik Haula Out At Least A Week With An Upper Body Injury


If the ongoing Lockout didn't zap the motivation to take our free time and write about the Minnesota Wild and their prospects - in other words, sorry about the lack of posts here -  we would  have written about what to make of Erik Haula at some point this season. One of the benefits of having the 2009 7th round pick play in the Wild's backyard is Dan and I see Haula play on a regular basis and the viewings rely less on stats than how his tools translate to the next level.

Unfortunately, this isn't that "what to make of it" post.

Summing up 2012 for the Minnesota Wild in 150 words

Granlund misses shootout like Bombay in Mighty Ducks and three Wild prospects end up being WJC champs. Mikko Koivu gets injured while the rest of the team follows their captain. Minnesota blows a three-goal lead against Nashville, falls from the top to the bottom, games get boring and we play FSN Bingo. Charlie Coyle becomes playoff MVP, Mario Lucia wins a title and Granlund Watch was a success. Mathew Dumba becomes the newest "First Round Bust" and the months to years of waiting for Zach Parise to come home happen on July 4th.

HOLY CRAP WE SIGNED PARISE AND RYAN SUTER!

Everyone gets excited and 4K season tickets are bought for naught. The NHL locks out the players on September 15th. Again. Prospects go to Houston and elsewhere while fans sit and wait for the State of Hockey to play a professional game.

Happy New Year from First Round Bust!

Is Minnesota Looking For A New Road Sweater?


Yesterday, top NHL uniform blog Icethetics published an article on the possibility that the Minnesota Wild are planning on unveiling new road uniforms for the 2013-2014 season. Normally teams announce their intentions for wearing new jerseys months in advance (although Minnesota unveiled their 3rd jerseys at the State Fair during the final week in August), but that's hard to do with the Lockout intact.

2013 World Junior Championships: A Quick & Dirty Wild Prospect Primer


Today (or more accurately earlier this morning) marks the beginning of the 2013 World Junior Championships in Ufa, Russia, which runs through January 5. The annual tournament features the world's best players under 20 and is a treat for hockey and prospect fans of all shapes, sizes and nationalities.

It's also an unofficial state holiday in Canada. Seriously, they loves some hot WJC action north of the 49th.

The NHL Lockout...A Christmas Story

Editor's note: The following article was written by Tim Freitag, which we hope you enjoy. You can follow Tim on Twitter @KariTakko (and no, he's not the backup NHL goaltender). As always, First Round Bust has an open pulpit policy.


Perspective

I wanted to make sure I got in another story in case the Mayans were right. With the passing of another year, and perhaps the passing of the human race, I thought it time to look at the lockout through the perspective of the Christmas season.

The Ghost of lockouts past.

From the 04-05 Lockout
Philadelphia Flyers center Jeremy Roenick has some advice for hockey fans who blame the NHL lockout on players' greed: Once it's finally settled, stay home.

Devin Setoguchi Suspended by Ontario


After going back, back to Cali Cali in November, locked out Minnesota Wild forward Devin Setoguchi is eventually getting one more chance.

Setoguchi was suspended today by the Ontatio Reign for an unknown reason. This was first reported by John Hoven and confirmed by the ECHL website. He was playing for the California-based ECHL team to keep in shape during the Lockout and scored 13 points in 10 games for the Reign.

Wild Prospect Handbook Issue #2 Is Out!


We're happy to announce that the second issue of the "Wild Prospect Handbook" is out and available for free download!

The "Wild Prospect Handbook" is a collaboration between First Round Bust and Hockey Wilderness that strives to bring an easy and unique look at the Minnesota Wild prospect pool. Featuring exclusive articles, interviews and NHL Draft analysis, the prospect handbook is the best collection of prospect talent in the State of Hockey.

This edition is headlined by an in-depth interview and feature on 2011 7th round pick Tyler Graovac and also includes:
  • A Wild WJC Preview
  • Houston Aeros update by Houston Chronicle beat writer Heather Galindo
  • A look at Wild goaltenders by Justin Goldman of The Goalie Guild
  • Scouting reports on Matt Dumba, Charlie Coyle, and Johan Larsson

Once again, the entire second issue is available for free download. Please feel free to share it and pass it along - that is why we made the prospect handbook in the first place!

Follow the Wild Prospect Handbook on Twitter and like us on Facebook. You can also follow First Round Bust on Twitter along with Nate (@gopherstate) and Dan (@shraderD).

We'd also like to thank Daniel Chan of Hockey Wilderness for editing and putting the handbook together. 

Photo Credit: Ottawa67s.com

Mikael Granlund & Nick Seeler return from injuries; Wild Prospects top HF Rankings


Just a bit of housekeeping during this low point in NHL-NHLPA negotiations. Hopefully there is more as the weekend and next few days go on but it seems like every time I say that it's a broken promise.

First of all, the Wild are #1! Woo-hoo!

Mario Lucia Makes Team USA Preliminary Roster



USA Hockey released their preliminary list for the WJC this morning and it included Minnesota Wild prospect Mario Lucia. This comes a day after Canada invited Tyler Graovac and Mathew Dumba (but not Raphael Bussieres) as part of their 37 man roster.

The 2011 second round pick is one of 27 players on the roster (which must get down to 23) who will be a part of the December 16-18 camp in Lake Placid, NY.

Dumba, Graovac Heading To Camp

Now that the calender has turned and we're now into December, it means for us that The World Junior Championships and the hoopla surrounding the event begin to ratchet up. Today a number of Selection Camp rosters were revealed, and it wouldn't be Canada if they didn't get worked up about their Selection Camp roster- which, convenient for us Wild fans, have two players who are Minnesota properties in Mathew Dumba and Tyler Graovac.


So after the jump, we'll touch on their selections and their chances of wearing the Maple Leaf at this year's Tournament in Ufa, Russia.