After an impressive come-from-behind 5-3 win over the Washington Capitals last night, the Minnesota Wild has reassigned rookie winger Brett Bulmer to Iowa of the American Hockey League.
Bulmer, 21, returns to Iowa after being recalled yesterday and playing 6:18 of ice time last night on the third line with Matt Cooke and Charlie Coyle. In five games with Minnesota this season, the 6’4″ 212-pound forward has recorded seven shots and has notched three assists and eight penalty minutes in 14 career NHL games. Bulmer is currently tied for the team lead in goals scored with nine and has an additional five assists for 14 points in 24 games with Iowa this season.
In other news, the 2014 Under-20 World Junior Hockey Championships are over. Rasmus Ristolainen (Buffalo, ’13) scored in overtime to lift Finland over Gustav Olofsson and the Swedes in the tournament’s gold medal game. Olofsson was a negative-1 rating and fired three shots on goal in the loss. In total, Minnesota’s top selection in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft would notch a goal and four assists for five points, a plus-6 rating, two penalty minutes and 13 shots in establishing himself as one of the tournament’s best defenders and a major highlight for Team Sweden.
For the second year in a row, Team Canada failed to medal in the tournament, falling 2-1 to Russia in the bronze medal game. Canadian assistant captain Mathew Dumba, drafted 7th overall by the Wild in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft, would notch an assist, a plus-3 rating, 12 penalty minutes and 16 shots in the tournament. After being the final cut each of the past two tournaments, Dumba finally made the team in his last year of eligibility. He was the only player on Team Canada with significant NHL experience, having collected a power play goal and an assist for two points and a negative-5 rating in 13 games as a rookie this season.
The next stage 0f development for both young defensemen appears to suddenly be in doubt. With Jared Spurgeon out “weeks”, there’s a good chance Dumba finds himself back in St. Paul for at least the timebeing. If he is returned to the Western Hockey League, the Portland Winterhawks currently hold his rights.
Olofsson, on the other hand, was supposed to be headed back to the NCAA’s Colorado College, but there have been rumors regarding a possible move to major junior and the WHL in particular. If this is the case, his rights are held by Portland, as well. Though nothing is confirmed, just thinking about this excites this hockey writer. I love college puck as much as anyone, but the level of competition in the Canadian major junior leagues is elite as far as this age group is concerned. For these two bue liners to receive top minutes for the rest of the WHL regular season and a deep playoff run, it could go a long way in helping them develop into the players the Wild drafted them to be.
Again, nothing is confirmed on that front, but we’ll keep you updated as the situation develops.