The Minnesota Wild mopped up the Edmonton Oilers last night by a score of 4-1, thanks in large part to the efforts of rookie goalie Darcy Kuemper. In four starts since January 7th, the big 6’5″ goalie has gone 3-1-0 with a 1.23 goals against average, a .957 save percentage and a shutout. Tomorrow, he’ll receive his fourth straight start in the biggest single game of Minnesota’s regular season–Hockey Day.
We’ll have more on the Wild tomorrow, but here’s the whole rundown of tomorrow’s festivities per the team’s website.
The particulars for the eight-annual Hockey Day Minnesota are set.
FOX Sports North, in conjunction with the Minnesota Wild and Wells Fargo, announces details for Hockey Day Minnesota on Saturday, Jan. 18. The day will feature more than 16 hours of original hockey-related programming and continuous coverage through the Wild’s social media channels and on Wild.com.
The telecast event begins at 9:00 a.m. with a look at the rich history and tradition of the Handke Pit, followed by previews of the heart-warming and inspirational hockey stories that will be highlighted throughout the day.
The regional sports network will have a full team of on-air talent reporting throughout the day, including Tom Chorske, Ben Clymer, Marney Gellner, Mike Greenlay, Kevin Gorg, Casey Hankinson, Tom Hanneman, Anthony Lapanta, Doug McLeod, Wes Walz and Doug Woog. Viewers will also see a few familiar faces from last year, including Brendan Burke (play-by-play for high school games) and Sophia Minnaert (sideline reporter for high school games).
Fans can participate in the events through social media, with the opportunity to be part of the telecast via text and photo submissions collected using #HDM2014. The custom “squeeze back” social screen on FOX Sports North PLUS will begin at 9:00am. In addition, fans can win great prizes throughout the day from the Wild and FOX Sports North, like merchandise, game tickets and a TV truck experience, by using #HDM2014 on Twitter. The Wild will drive the conversation from @mnwild with several #stateofhockey related questions. The club’s Hockey Day Minnesota page, found at Wild.com/hockeyday, is featuring stories throughout the State of Hockey all week leading up to the celebration.
The State of Hockey Legacy Award, first presented as a part of Hockey Day 2010, will be presented to Lou Nanne, the Minnesota hockey legend who this year celebrates calling his 50th high school state tournament. Nanne starred for the University of Minnesota, the 1968 United States Olympic team and the Minnesota North Stars. Off the ice, he helped manage numerous United States National teams, and was the face of the North Stars as General Manager and President. Prior Legacy Award winners include Lou Cotroneo, Neal Broten and Glen Sonmor.
For the first time, FOX Sports North will incorporate an exclusive Hockey Day Minnesota theme song throughout the broadcast. “Winter Love” by Bracher Brown, which was previewed earlier in January by Paul Fletcher on Cities 97, will air throughout the day along with highlight clips and unique content. The track can be purchased on iTunes.
Another new element, FOX Sports North will debut a winter “Fan Express” bus on Hockey Day Minnesota. The fully wrapped 55-seat luxury charter bus featuring FOX Sports branding and Minnesota hometown winter sports teams will serve as a shuttle for fans attending the outdoor events in Elk River.
Hockey Day Minnesota 2014 Features:
• The Handke Pit: A one-of-a-kind outdoor rink in Elk River, Minn., the Norman Rockwell-like site was formed by glaciers, and the natural bowl ‘pit’ is on the National Register of Historic Places. It has been in continuous use as a winter rink since the 1920’s, and features extensive stonework and a stone warming house dating back to the New Deal.
• Pine City: Brain cancer took Beau Berglund at the age of 25. The hockey fanatic’s funeral was held at a hockey rink in Pine City, Minn. His memory lives on through an annual outdoor charity tournament in Pine City on Hockey Day.
• Andrew Qualy: A Shakopee native and avid hockey player, Qualy joined the Army in 2013. While serving in Iraq, he was wounded in action and suffered a broken skull and shattered leg. Now back in Minnesota, the Minnesota Warriors hockey team plays an important role in his rehab, both mentally and physically.
• Paul Martin: The Elk River, Minn. native and current Pittsburgh Penguin is arguably the best hockey player the community has produced. Martin gives us a personal tour of his hometown and reflects on his hockey memories.
• The Reilley Family: Three brothers, Conner, Ryan and Mike, all currently play hockey for the Golden Gophers, following in their dad’s footsteps.
• Special Olympics Poly-Hockey: A heart-warming story about the Burns family from Owatonna and a reminder that hockey is for everyone. Learn more about poly-hockey, a sport only offered by Special Olympics in the states of Minnesota and Michigan.
A “FOX Sports Supports” partner, Special Olympics Minnesota will be honored as an important community partner on Hockey Day Minnesota. The not-for-profit organization will officially kick off their Polar Plunge season at Lake Nokomis (the site of the U.S. Pond Hockey Championships) with the support of FOX Sports and FOX Sports North.
Hockey Day Minnesota 2014 on FOX Sports North will be the eighth annual celebration of hockey from peewees to pros. Previous sites for outdoor games include Baudette Bay (2007-08), St. Paul (2009), Hermantown (2010), Moorhead (2011), Lake Minnetonka/Excelsior (2012) and Grand Rapids (2013).
The Hockey Day Minnesota 2014 schedule is as follows:
10:00 a.m. Rochester Lourdes vs. Cloquet/Esko/Carlton (live) FSNorth/ PLUS, FS2/FSGO
1:30 p.m. Elk River vs. Stillwater (live) FSNorth/ PLUS, FS2/ FSGO
5:00 p.m. University of Minnesota vs. Ohio State (live) FSNorth/PLUS, FS2/ FSGO, BTN2Go
8:00 p.m. Minnesota Wild vs. Dallas Stars (live) FSNorth/PLUS
11:00 p.m. Elk River vs. Anoka -girls- (delayed) FSNorth/PLUS, FS2, FSGO
We’ll see you tomorrow.