Minnesota hockey news: Wild begin season Saturday, college hockey begins tonightMinnesota Sports
-- The Minnesota Wild will open the regular season tomorrow night against the Columbus Blue Jackets at The Xcel Energy Center.
ST. PAUL -- The Minnesota Wild will open the regular season tomorrow night against the Columbus Blue Jackets at The Xcel Energy Center.
Minnesota missed the playoffs after going 39-35-8 last season. Minnesota was 12th in the Western Conference with 86 points. Minnesota waived Eric Nystrom yesterday to give itself more "roster flexibility" according to general manager Chuck Fletcher. The puck drops tomorrow at 7:00 p.m.
Columbus hosts Nashville at Nationwide Arena tonight as both teams open regular-season play. Columbus finished 34-35-13 last year for 81 points and last place in the Central Division. Rick Nash led the team with 61 points on 32 goals and 34 assists. The team added center Jeff Carter in the off-season to help Nash up front, while Steve Mason will assume the duties in goal. Columbus will leave immediately following tonight's home game and head to Minnesota for the Wild home opener on Saturday evening.
A judge has dismissed the felony charge against the brother of former Wild forward Derek Boogaard, who died of a drug overdose. Aaron Boogaard was accused of giving his 28-year-old brother an oxycodone pill the night before he was found dead in his Minneapolis apartment May 13th. Boogaard was charged with unlawful distribution of a controlled substance. A Hennepin County judge threw out that charge Thursday. Aaron still faces a gross misdemeanor charge for allegedly flushing the remaining pills down the toilet before police arrived. The judge also ordered a five-day stay on the dismissal, while the Hennepin County Attorney's Office determines its next step in the case.
Tonight is a big night of men's and women's college hockey, as teams from the WCHA open play tonight and tomorrow. In men's hockey, defending national champ Minnesota-Duluth hosts preseason No. 1 Notre Dame tonight. Minnesota entertains Sacred Heart. Minnesota State-Mankato is at Rensselaer. Bemidji State plays at Miami of Ohio. St. Cloud State welcomes Alaska-Fairbanks. There's a full docket of women's action, as well.