It’s three-plus hours south of the Xcel Energy Center. Des Moines Iowa hardly strikes you as a hockey hot bed, but it’s the ideal partner for the Minnesota Wild.
The Minnesota Wild have acquired forward Curt Gogol from the San Jose Sharks for forward Chad Rau in a trade of minor leaguers. San Jose general manager Doug Wilson announced the move Wednesday, ahead of the team’s home game against the Dallas Stars. The Sharks had lost four of their last five. Rau has one goal and six assists in 33 games this season for the AHL’s Iowa Wild. He has two goals in nine career NHL games for Minnesota. He will report to the Worcester affiliate.
Tyler Matson spent some golden years as a Golden Gopher. “Unbelievable experience,” Matson said. “Playing for Don Lucia, the Gophers and being in Minnesota and being a Minnesota kid … you want to play there.” His current residence is just over three hours south in Des Moines, where he plays for the Wild’s AHL team – the Iowa Wild. Interstate 35W and a whole bunch of players are between him and the big club.
The Minnesota Wild have recalled goalie Johan Gustafsson from the AHL, after a lower-body injury that forced Josh Harding out of the last game after two periods. Gustafsson was 2-0 with a 1.99 goals against average in three games this season for the Iowa Wild. The sixth-round pick in the 2010 draft played in his native Sweden last season and has not appeared in an NHL game. He’ll be the backup to Niklas Backstrom when the Wild play at Chicago Saturday. Coach Mike Yeo said after practice Friday that Harding was feeling better but won’t travel to the game.